The research was partly supported by Beckman Coulter Inc., which makes the assay the team used for measuring AMH in blood samples.
AMH predicts eggs, pregnancy
AMH is made by small follicles in the ovary and helps regulate their growth. AMH levels in the blood are an indicator of how many follicles a woman has at the time of the hormone measurement.
In their research, Blazar and Lambert-Messerlian's team measured AMH levels in 190 IVF patients, ages 22 to 44, both at the beginning and end of their preparatory course of follicle stimulation hormone treatment. They counted the eggs that were eventually harvested and then performed blood tests and later an ultrasound to confirm pregnancy.
The researchers found that women with low AMH levels in the first test (less than one nanogram per milliliter) on average yielded only about six eggs, while women who had more than three times as much AMH provided about 20 eggs on average.
In this study, AMH similarly predicted whether pregnancy became established. Only about a quarter of women with less than one nanogram of AMH were pregnant five to six weeks after the IVF procedure. Among women with more than three nanograms, three in five were pregnant at that stage.
Lambert-Messerlian cautioned that most other studies have not found an association of AMH levels and pregnancy success though delivery.
Blazar noted that because some women with low AMH levels were still able to establish pregnancies, he wouldn't recommend that all such women necessarily forgo an upcoming IVF procedure.
|Contact: David Orenstein|