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International Journal of Endocrinology
Volume 2013, Article ID 818912, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/818912
Review Article

Potential Mechanisms for Racial and Ethnic Differences in Antimüllerian Hormone and Ovarian Reserve

Genesis Fertility & Reproductive Medicine, Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Maimonides Medical Center, 1355 84th Street, Brooklyn, NY 11228, USA

Received 11 June 2013; Revised 21 October 2013; Accepted 21 October 2013

Academic Editor: Petra Stute

Copyright © 2013 Reshef Tal and David B. Seifer. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Accumulating evidence suggests that reproductive potential and function may be different across racial and ethnic groups. Racial differences have been demonstrated in pubertal timing, infertility, outcomes after assisted reproductive technology (ART) treatment, and reproductive aging. Recently, racial differences have also been described in serum antimüllerian hormone (AMH), a sensitive biomarker of ovarian reserve, supporting the notion that ovarian reserve differs between racial/ethnic groups. The existence of such racial/ethnic differences in ovarian reserve, as reflected by AMH, may have important clinical implications for reproductive endocrinologists. However, the mechanisms which may underlie such racial differences in ovarian reserve are unclear. Various genetic factors and environmental factors such as obesity, smoking, and vitamin D deficiency which have been shown to correlate with serum AMH levels and also display significant racial/ethnic variations are discussed in this review. Improving our understanding of racial differences in ovarian reserve and their underlying causes may be essential for infertility treatment in minority women and lead to better reproductive planning, improved treatment outcomes, and timely interventions which may prolong reproductive lifespan in these women.