Independent serum markers of corpora lutea function after gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist trigger and adjuvant low dose human chorionic gonadotropin in in vitro fertilization

Higher 17a-hydroxyprogesterone and prorenin levels after adjuvant human chorionic gonadotropin at oocyte retrieval suggests rescue of more corpora lutea compared with dual trigger but may also confer higher risk for ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome.

Volume 112, Issue 3, Pages 534–544


Leah Kaye, M.D., Daniel Griffin, M.D., Jeffrey Thorne, M.D., Evelyn Neuber, Ph.D., John Nulsen, M.D., Claudio Benadiva, M.D., H.C.L.D., Lawrence Engmann, M.D.



To characterize corpora lutea (CL) function after gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) trigger with the use of adjuvant human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG).


Secondary analysis of serum from prospective randomized clinical trial.


University-based fertility center.


Women under 40 years of age at risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) with serum E2 level <4,000 pg/mL.


All subjects underwent ovarian stimulation with the use of a GnRH antagonist protocol. Within a larger study, subjects were randomized to receive 1,000 IU hCG at the time of GnRHa trigger and placebo at the time of vaginal oocyte retrieval (VOR) or placebo at the time of GnRHa trigger and 1,500 IU hCG at the time of VOR.

Main Outcome Measure(s)

Luteal phase and early pregnancy curves of serum prorenin and 17α-hydroxyprogesterone (17OH-P).


Thirty subjects enrolled in this secondary analysis. Serum 17OH-P peaked in the early luteal phase, 5 days after GnRHa trigger, with a nadir in the mid-luteal phase 9 days after trigger. Serum prorenin peaked in the luteal phase 2 days after GnRHa trigger, independently from adjuvant hCG timing, and reached a nadir at 9 days after trigger. CL function appears higher when adjuvant hCG is given at VOR compared with adjuvant hCG given at the time of trigger.


CL function, as interpreted by proxy measures of serum prorenin and 17OH-P with pregnancy, continues despite GnRHa trigger. Both options for adjuvant hCG timing are sufficient for CL rescue and successful pregnancy, so the potential for OHSS risk with increased CL activity after hCG at VOR should be considered.

Clinical Trial Registration Number


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