Increasing NAD levels could improve the quality of eggs, states research
A study has identified that infertility due to age-related defects in eggs could be improved by raising levels of NAD, presenting a possible novel fertility treatment.
Female infertility is a common and devastating condition with life-long health, emotional, and social consequences.
Currently, there is no pharmacological therapy for preserving oocyte quality during aging, which is the strongest risk factor for infertility. This leads to an age-dependent decline in natural conception and IVF success rates. This is due in part to declining levels of the metabolic cofactor nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) and that restoring NAD+ levels rejuvenates oocyte quality and quantity leading to improved fertility. Overexpression of SIRT2 maintains oocyte spindle assembly, accurate chromosome segregation, decreased oxidative stress, and overall fertility with aging. Pharmacological elevation of NAD+ may be an effective, non-invasive strategy for restoring and maintaining female fertility during aging, and for improving the success of IVF.
The University of Queensland (UQ), Australia, study, published in Cell Reports, found a non-invasive fertility treatment that could maintain or restore the quality and number of eggs in aging women.
Egg quality, according to Professor Homer, is becoming a bigger issue as women choose to have children later in life and in vitro fertilisation (IVF) cannot improve egg quality or reverse age-related defects.
“IVF cannot improve egg quality, so the only alternative for older women at present is to use eggs donated by younger women. Our findings suggest there is an opportunity to restore egg quality and in turn female reproductive function using oral administration of NAD-boosting agents – which would be far less invasive than IVF. It is important to stress, however, that although promising, the potential benefits of these agents remains to be tested in clinical trials,” concluded Professor Homer.