Özge Özkaya, PhD

Özge has a Phd in Molecular Biology and several years experience working as a bench scientists. She has been working in science communication since 2014.

Personalised Medicine for Endometriosis?

The lining of the uterus of women with endometriosis is different from that of women without the disease even if they have chronic pelvic pain found a study published in the scientific journal Biology of Reproduction. The difference is found at the level of small fragments of genetic material called micro RNAs or miRNAs that do not code for protein. These molecules control which proteins will be made and which ones will not in different tissues. The study found that…

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Oral Contraceptives and Low-Cost Progestins to Reduce Endometriosis-Associated Pain

Most women with endometriosis-associated pain did not feel the need to use expensive progestin or undergo surgery. Instead, they were satisfied with a low-cost progestin to treat their symptoms. This is according to a study published in the journal Fertility and Sterility. These results are important because they suggest that low-cost progestins may constitute a “high-value care” option for the management of endometriosis. In order to assess whether patients with symptomatic endometriosis were satisfied with the medical treatment they received,…

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Link Between Type of Endometriosis and Cancer

The type of endometriosis a woman has could determine her risk of gynecologic cancer, according to a study published in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology. This is important because it means that those women who are at a higher risk of developing gynecologic cancer could be followed more closely and start being treated as soon as possible if need be. In order to identify the potential link between the type of endometriosis and the risk of gynecologic cancer, a team…

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New Target for Endometriosis Treatment?

NR4A1 could be a novel target for the treatment of endometriosis, according to a study published in the scientific journal Cell Physiology and Biochemistry. NR4A1 is a receptor protein involved in cell division, inflammation, and programmed cell death. The development and progression of endometriosis have been linked to fibrosis or the formation of scar tissue, causing chronic pelvic pain and infertility in women affected by this disease. Transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) is the most potent promoter of fibrosis and is…

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Could Gabapentin Make my Pain Go Away?

Gabapentin could effectively reduce endometriosis-associated pain, according to a new study published in the Journal of Pain Research. The study that was conducted in mice and endometriotic tissues from patients suggests that certain proteins present on the surface of cells and that are involved in the perception of pain could be playing an important role in endometriosis symptoms such as chronic pelvic pain. Therefore, targeting these proteins with medication could be effective in treating endometriosis-associated pain. Previous research has shown…

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Will my Endometriosis Respond to Hormone Therapy?

Every woman has a different set of hormone receptors in the lining of their uterus. Yet, hormone-based therapies that are used to treat women with endometriosis do not take into consideration these differences among patients. Analyzing, which particular hormone receptors are present in different individuals with endometriosis before hormone treatment is started, could predict their likelihood to respond to treatment and pave the way for personalized medicine approaches in the future. In order to characterize the pattern of hormone receptors…

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A Way to Better Diagnose Colorectal Endometriosis

Combining magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with computed tomography-based virtual colonoscopy (CTC) can make the assessment of colorectal endometriosis more accurate. This is important because it can help doctors plan the surgery better and inform their patients. In order to evaluate whether combining the two techniques can improve assessment of colorectal endometriosis before surgery, a team of researchers led by Dr. Horace Roman at Rouen University Hospital in France conducted a retrospective study using prospectively recorded data. They analyzed a total…

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Role of GATA6 in Endometriosis

Researchers discovered that a protein called GATA6 is crucial in turning endometrial stromal cells into endometriotic-like cells, which may be capable of invading surrounding tissues and growing outside the uterus.  This knowledge can be used to create cell models that can be used in the laboratory to further study the biology of endometriosis. As the impact of GATA6 is better understood, new strategies to diagnose and treat endometriosis can also be developed, according to the authors of the study that…

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Could Endometriosis Be Caused by Bacteria?

A new concept called the bacterial contamination hypothesis in endometriosis has been proposed for the first time by researchers in Japan. This means that new potential therapies approaches could exist for this condition in addition to the conventional estrogen-suppressing therapies. The team led by Dr. Jo Kitawaki at the Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine in Japan measured the levels of endotoxin in the menstrual blood and peritoneal fluid, of women with and without endometriosis. Endotoxins are toxic substance released by…

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Increasing IVF Success Rates

DuoStim or double ovarian stimulation is the most promising approach to increase the number of eggs collected to be used in IVF, according to a review article published in the journal Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology.  Pain and infertility are common features of endometriosis and research have shown that 35 to 50 percent of women with endometriosis are infertile. IVF may be an option for women with endometriosis who cannot get pregnant naturally, but the technique is not always…

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How Does Endometriosis Affect the Sexual Satisfaction of Men?

Although the majority of men whose partner has endometriosis are satisfied or very satisfied with their sexual relationship, the proportion of men who are not sexually satisfied is higher among those whose partner has endometriosis compared to those whose partner does not have endometriosis. This according to a study by researchers in Switzerland who analyzed almost 500 couples. The results were published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. According to the authors of the study, these findings stress the importance of…

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miRNAs, Could Be a Reliable Biomarker of Endometriosis

miRNAs, small pieces of genetic material found in the blood could be used as a reliable marker to diagnose endometriosis, according to a study by U.S. researchers. They could also be used to follow the progression of the disease and measure how well it responds to treatment. Being able to monitor the natural behavior of endometriosis and to understand how well a certain therapy works, are of great importance to improve patient care. This research shows that serum miRNAs could…

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Treatment of Endometriosis in Adolescents

Most women with endometriosis who have been treated with Lupron plus add back as adolescents felt the treatment was effective in reducing the pain caused by the condition, according to a study published in the Journal of Pediatric & Adolescent Gynecology. Moreover, most of them would recommend the treatment to others despite the side effects, the study found. Lupron is a gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonist (GnRHa) that provides pain relief and reduces the size of endometriosis lesions. To investigate the tolerability…

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"New Pain Dairy" Could Help Better Evaluate the Impact of Endometriosis on Women’s Daily Lives

Researchers developed a new patient-reported endometriosis pain daily diary.  The diary can help evaluate endometriosis-related pain and the impacts this can have on patients' lives as well as be used in clinical trials to assess patients’ response to treatment. “The [diary] represents an important step in providing an effective [patient-reported outcome] to evaluate pain associated with endometriosis and its related impacts on patients,” the researchers wrote in their article that was published in the journal Health and Quality of Life…

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The Long-Term Effect of Endometriosis

Women with endometriosis have a decreased pain tolerance even after fertile age and therefore require long-term treatment and psychological support Endometriosis has a long-term effect on the pain tolerance of women, suggests a study published in The Journal of Pain. It is therefore of great importance to provide these women with adequate psychological support and medical treatment even after their fertile years. The findings also suggest that delaying the diagnosis of endometriosis may lead to increased pain sensitization. So diagnosing…

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The Chance of Getting Pregnant of a Woman with Endometriosis May Soon Be Predictable

Researchers have found a new way of predicting whether or not an embryo will be able to successfully implant into the womb of a woman with endometriosis. These findings could make it possible to predict whether she is likely to become pregnant either naturally or following assisted reproductive treatments. The predictor in question is the level of so-called natural killer (NK) cells in the uterus. NK cells are types of specialized immune cells that play a crucial role in eliminating…

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Does Endometriosis Cause Infertility?

Infertility may be related to the localization of endometriosis involvement according to a study published in the Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. This finding is in agreement with the results of previous studies and could help clinicians in their decision making about the treatment of infertile women with a diagnosis of endometriosis. To better analyze the relationship between pelvic pain, infertility, and the localization of endometriosis lesions, a team of researchers from Iran assessed the prevalence of endometriosis in 430…

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Another Marker to Predict the Outcome of IVF for Women with Endometriosis

AOPPs or advanced oxidative protein products may be new markers to predict egg quality and the outcomes of IVF in infertile women with endometriosis according to a study published in the journal Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine. This finding suggests that anti-oxidative treatments that can reduce the levels of AOPPs may potentially be used as a treatment to increase egg quality and IVF success rates. Oxidative stress is an imbalance between free radicals (also called reactive oxygen species or ROS) that are produced…

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Restricting Calorie Intake Could Delay or Prevent Endometriosis

Reducing the intake of calories could stop the development of endometriosis according to research conducted in mice. This could be the case even after the lesions are established, i.e. endometriosis has started. Dietary supplements or drug candidates that mimic the beneficial effects of restricting calories may have the same effect. Many studies have shown that reducing calorie intake by 30 to 40 percent without causing deficiencies of any specific nutrients, can prolong lifespan, reduce tumor growth and spread, and delay…

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Potential New Target to Treat Endometriosis?

Special cells called myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSC) could be playing a role in the development of endometriosis, suggests a study published in the European Journal of Immunology.  These cells could, therefore, be targeted by novel therapeutic agents to treat endometriosis.  MDSCs are a group of cells that originate from bone marrow stem cells. (Stem cells are unspecialized cells that can differentiate and give rise to any cell type in the body). MDSCs are cells that are still immature and that…

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