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Promise of new drug for polycystic ovary syndrome

3 May 1999
By BioNews
Appeared in BioNews 6

A study has found that an experimental drug which normalises insulin use in the body could be the basis of a treatment for polycystic ovary syndrome, a common cause of infertility. Affecting between 5 and 10 percent of women of reproductive age, the condition leads to cyst filled ovaries and an inability to menstruate.

The promising new treatment appears to restore women's ovulatory cycles and to reverse hormonal imbalances. Although earlier studies also appeared to suggest that drugs treating insulin resistance could relieve the syndrome, the drugs used caused a variety of side effects.

The new research, conducted by Dr Nestler and colleagues at Virginia Commonwealth University, used a compound called D-chiroiunositol which appears to by-pass these side effects. The study is published in the New England Journal of Medicine (29 April). A larger study of the drug's safety and effectiveness is being funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development in the US.

SOURCES & REFERENCES
New drug offers hope to infertile
Washington Post |  29 April 1999
New drug promising for ovary syndrome
CNN Interactive |  28 April 1999
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