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.

Factors Associated with Endometriosis Risk

Socio-economic factors, lifestyle habits, and other physical and mental illnesses may be linked to endometriosis according to a new observational study published in the European Journal Of Obstetrics Gynecology And Reproductive Biology.  Endometriosis is a debilitating condition affecting as many as 1 in 10 women of reproductive age. The condition is characterized by tissue resembling the lining of the uterus growing elsewhere in the body, usually around the reproductive organs. This causes severe pelvic pain and can lead to reduced…

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Will Getting Pregnant Make My Pain Go Away?

Pregnancy can relieve the symptoms of endometriosis, according to a new study published in the European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology. However, for most women, the pain usually returns like in the case of hormonal therapy. This is an important finding because most women with endometriosis are advised by their doctor to become pregnant as soon as possible. However, this can be very stressful for patients especially if they are not ready to start a family.  “Overall,…

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Could Endometriosis-Related Infertility Be Genetic?

Researchers identified genetic polymorphisms or individual differences in two genes called AMA5 and KAZN among women with endometriosis who were infertile and control women who were fertile. The identification of these polymorphisms could help scientists better understand why some women with endometriosis are infertile. This could ultimately help them develop new ways to target these genes in order to treat endometriosis-associated infertility. Infertility is one of the main symptoms of endometriosis with women with the disease having a significantly lower…

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Will I Have Complications After Endometriosis Surgery?

The rate of complications after surgery to treat deep infiltrating endometriosis is low, confirmed a study by researchers in Germany. It is important to know whether major or minor complications following surgery are likely to develop and what the outcome will be for abdominal functions such as those related to urinary and bowel movement and sexual activity. Complications can affect patients’ quality of life and information on the likelihood of developing them can help doctors and patients decide on whether…

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Kidney Hormone Potential Treatment for Endometriosis?

Erythropoietin, a hormone produced by the kidneys to promote the production of red blood cells could be a promising candidate for the treatment of endometriosis. This is according to a study published in the Journal Of The Turkish-German Gynecological Association by Dr. Mehmet Yalçin Günal and colleagues. Apart from the kidneys, erythropoietin and the receptor that it binds to, are also found in the cells lining the uterus. These are the cells that start growing outside the uterus in endometriosis. Previous…

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Endometriosis Surgery Reduces Pain and Improves Quality of Life

Endometriosis surgery improves pelvic and sexual pain according to a study published in the Journal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology. This improvement stays stable over time meaning that the benefits of surgery last for years. In order to assess the effect of endometriosis surgery on patients’ quality of life, a team of researchers led by Dr. Nicolas Bourdel at Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Clermont Ferrand in France analyzed 981 patients, ages 15 to 50 who underwent laparoscopic surgery for the treatment of…

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IVF Is the Best Option to Become Pregnant for Women with Severe Endometriosis, or Is It Not?

Treating rectal endometriosis with surgery seems to increase the chance of a woman conceiving, with most pregnancies occurring naturally. This is according to a study published in the medical journal Human Reproduction.  The optimal treatment for women with severe endometriosis wishing to become pregnant is strongly debated with some doctors supporting the use of surgery as the best treatment option and others favoring assisted reproductive techniques such as IVF.  The European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) states that…

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A Better Way to Diagnose Endometriosis?

Three proteins found in the blood and endometrial tissues could be used to determine the stage of endometriosis and the severity of painful periods according to a study published in the journal Current Medical Science. Evaluating the levels of these three proteins spontaneously could improve the sensitivity and specificity of a diagnosis of endometriosis and could help clinicians decide on the therapeutic route to take. For the study, researchers in China analyzed 80 women with endometriosis. Of these women 20…

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Should I Have Surgery Before Trying to Conceive?

The presence of rectouterine nodules is associated with a lower chance of becoming pregnant with in vitro fertilization (IVF), according to a study published in the Journal of Gynecology Obstetrics and Human Reproduction. This finding is important as it can allow healthcare professionals to offer better counseling to patients with deep pelvic endometriosis. Endometriosis is associated with infertility in 30-50 percent of cases. IVF is commonly used to treat infertile women with endometriosis but the technique is not always successful.…

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Fluorescence Guided Surgery: a New Technique to Treat Deep Infiltrating Endometriosis

Fluorescence-guided surgery could help differentiate recto-vaginal deep infiltrating endometriosis nodules (RVDIEN) from healthy rectal tissue and remove them successfully without perforating the rectum, according to a study published in the scientific journal Surgical Innovation.  The method could offer a better, less invasive alternative to treating deep infiltrating endometriosis. Deep infiltrating endometriosis of the recto-vaginal septum, the thin structure separating the vagina and the rectum, is a chronic disease associated with pelvic pain and severe pain during intercourse. It can also…

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Could the Sleep Hormone Treat Endometriosis?

Melatonin blocks cell proliferation, invasion, and migration in both normal and endometriotic epithelial cells, according to a study published in the scientific journal Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology. Melatonin could, therefore, be a potential treatment for endometriosis  The formation and progression of endometriosis are linked to a biological event known as the epithelial-mesenchymal transition or EMT. EMT is a process by which a certain type of cells called epithelial cells gain migratory and invasive properties and become another type of cells called…

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An Alternative Medical Approach to Treat Endometriosis?

Molecules that act on a protein called SRC-1 could constitute a new medical tool to treat endometriosis, according to a study published in the Journal of Endocrinology.  SRC-1 makes certain parts of DNA more accessible therefore increasing gene expression or the production of certain proteins. SRC-1 can be guided to different areas in the DNA by other molecules and this determines which genes will be more accessible. In endometriosis, estrogen receptors work with SRC-1 and play an essential role in…

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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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