Navigation Links
Female Reproductive Function Influenced by Childhood Environment

A study led by researchers at UCL (University College London) demonstrates that female reproductive function is influenced by childhood environment . This suggests there is a critical window of time from about 0-8 years of age that determines the rate at which girls physically mature and how high their reproductive hormone levels reach as adults.

Published today in PLoS Medicine, the study compares reproductive hormone levels of groups of Bangladeshi women who migrated at different periods of their life. It finds that women who migrated from Bangladesh to the UK during infancy and early childhood reach puberty earlier, are taller, and have up to 103 per cent higher levels of the hormone progesterone as adults in comparison to women who migrated at a later age, as well as those who had remained in Bangladesh. These higher hormone levels could potentially increase a womans ability to conceive.

Lead author Dr Alejandra Nez de la Mora, UCL Department of Anthropology, said: "The findings point to the period before puberty as a sensitive phase when changes in environmental conditions positively impact on key developmental stages. Put very simply, the female body seems to monitor its environment throughout childhood and before puberty, to gauge when and at what rate it will be best to mature. It then sets development, including reproductive hormone levels, accordingly. This is an advantage in evolutionary terms, as it makes the best of the resources and energy available for reproduction in any given circumstance.

"Girls who migrate at a young age seem to mature more quickly when they find themselves in an environment where the body has more access to energy. In other words, when theyre under less physical strain due to factors like a better diet and general health. When energy is a limited resource, it must be allocated between maintenance, growth, and reproductive functions the body makes trade-offs within the constraints it exp eriences. When conditions are better, these constraints are relaxed and more energy is diverted towards reproduction."

The results of this study are relevant not only to Bangladeshi groups, but to other migrant groups and populations in transition worldwide. These findings add to accumulating evidence that humans have an evolved capacity to respond to chronic environmental conditions during growth and to make decisions about how to apportion energy between reproductive and other bodily functions.

Five groups of women were selected and compared for the study. These included women who had grown up in Bangladesh but moved to the UK as adults; those who had moved to the UK as children; second generation Bangladeshi women living in the UK; women who were born and raised in Bangladesh; and a comparison group of women of European descent who were born and raised in the UK. Bangladeshi migrants were chosen for this study because of the long and on-going history of migration to the UK and the general contrasts in conditions between the two countries.

The subjects in each group gave saliva samples over an extended period, to measure levels of the female hormones progesterone and oestradiol. These are key fertility hormones, influencing the female menstrual cycle, pregnancy and embryonic development. Health information and body measurements were also provided by the subjects.

Co-author Dr Gillian Bentley, UCL Department of Anthropology, who directed the project added: "The theory that early environmental factors may affect reproductive function has been suggested previously by anthropologists, but this field study is the first to use measurements of hormone levels to demonstrate a link between childhood environment and reproductive maturation and function. However, hormone levels are not just relevant to reproduction. The significant increase in progesterone levels that we document in migrant women may result, for examp le, in higher breast cancer risks in subsequent generations of this community. The potential health implications are far-reaching."

Bangladesh, in South Asia, is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. The Bangladeshis who took part in the study were middle class women from the Sylhet District. Although a relatively affluent area of the country, inhabitants still suffer from higher immune challenges, primarily due to poor sanitation and limited access to healthcare. These aspects of the environment in Bangladesh are thought to be responsible for the slower development of the Bangladeshi women who grew up there.


Related medicine news :

1. Vitamin E supports Female Hearts
2. Genetic differences found between Male and Female brains
3. Female Smokers More Prone To Lung Cancer
4. The Success Rate Of Angioplasty In Female Patients Low
5. FDA Diminish Hopes On ‘Female Viagra
6. Have You Ever Wondered Why Male And Female Voices Differ?
7. Female Twins Have More To Share Than Just The Similarity: Risk Of Early Menopause
8. Hepatitis B A high cause of Asian Female Mortality
9. Female Condoms In The Offing
10. Sexual Harassment A Cause Of Deteriorating Health Among Female Flight Attendants.
11. The Chemistry Of Sexual Attraction Between Male And Female Elephants
Post Your Comments:

(Date:11/27/2015)... VVA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... motto of progress through sharing, the 2016 Building Better Radiology Marketing ... The conference will begin on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at Caesars Palace in ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... failing. Secura Consultants has prided itself for not only fulfilling the needs of ... protection solutions at an affordable price and providing top-tier customer service. However, there's ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 2015 , ... The men and women on this list ... the country. They have overseen financial turnarounds, shown commitment to their community through ... as a whole through their advocacy and professional efforts. , Becker's Hospital Review ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 2015 , ... Indosoft Inc., developer and distributor of the ... LTS (Long Term Support) into its Q-Suite 5.10 product line. , Making the ... a version of Asterisk that will receive not only security fixes, but feature ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... ... November 26, 2015 , ... CognisantMD and Cambridge Memorial ... in the Waterloo region. Using the Ocean Platform, family physicians can now order ... electronic medical record (EMR) without the need for redundant patient entry or an ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... 2015  Linden Care, LLC, a retail specialty pharmacy ... patients suffering from chronic pain, said today that it ... Order (TRO) enjoining Express Scripts from unilaterally terminating the ... --> --> The company said ... options. --> --> ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015 On Tuesday, November 24, ... trial against Wright Medical Technology, Inc. for product ... metal-on-metal hip implant device, awarded $11 million in ... week trial and three days of deliberations, the ... was defectively designed and unreasonably dangerous, and that ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015  Henry Schein, Inc., the world,s largest ... dental, medical and animal health practitioners, will unveil at ... Henry Schein ConnectDental® Pavilion , which brings together for ... solutions designed to help any practice or laboratory enter ... for a schedule of experts appearing at the Pavilion. ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: