The impact of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist long compared with GnRH antagonist protocols, under in vitro fertilization conditions on endometrial receptivity, is still debated. Therefore, we compared the effect of both GnRH antagonist and agonist long protocols on the endometrial receptivity by analyzing, to our knowledge for the first time, the global gene expression profile shift during the prereceptive and receptive stages of stimulated cycles under the two GnRH analogue protocols compared with natural cycles in the same patients. For the same normal-responder patients, endometrial biopsies were collected on the day of oocyte retrieval and on the day of embryo transfer after human chorionic gonadotropin administration of a stimulated cycle with either GnRH agonist long or GnRH antagonist protocols and compared with the prereceptive and receptive stages of a natural cycle. Samples were analyzed using DNA microarrays. Gene expression profiles and biological pathways involved during the prereceptive stage to the receptive endometrial transition of stimulated and natural cycles were analyzed and compared for each patient. Both protocols affect endometrial receptivity in comparison with their natural cycle in the same patients. Major differences in endometrial chemokines and growth factors under stimulated cycles in comparison with natural cycles were observed. Such an effect has been associated with gene expression alterations of endometrial receptivity. However, the endometrial receptivity under the GnRH antagonist protocol was more similar to the natural cycle receptivity than that under the GnRH agonist protocol.
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Vol. 82 • No. 4