The average age of first pregnancy in women has increased significantly over the past decade. However, overall fertilisation levels quickly fall with increasing age and are reduced to 50% at the age of 35 and to only 10% at the age of 40. Nowadays, one in every four couples is experiencing fertility problems. A major cause lies in ovarian ageing and/or disfunctioning.
GenOvum presently focuses on two ovarian conditions:
- Premature Ovarian Insufficiency (POI), i.e. cessation of ovarian function before age 40, and
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), a hormonal disorder that often causes infertility.
GenOvum aims to develop diagnostic tests for ovarian ageing and dysfunction using microarray technology. The diagnostics tests are aimed to provide better treatment options for patients suffering from PCOS and can be used for patient stratification to determine which patients are likely to respond to a certain IVF treatment or protocol.
In addition, GenOvum aims for the development of prognostic tests to assess the risk of accelerated ovarian ageing and related changes that may impair spontaneous conception. Such a test could be used for family planning and help in the prevention of unwanted childlessness.
The first POI and PCOS studies have been completed and the company is awaiting the results.