While the search for genetic determinants of maternal aging continues, new lines of evidence are emphasizing the role of lifestyle and environmental exposure on ovarian physiology and the age-related loss of oocyte quality in humans. This lecture will review current notions of maternal aging focusing on intraovarian alterations in the somatic and germ cell compartments prior to, during and after the reproductive lifespan of women. Emphasis will be placed on epigenetic modifications of the genome involved with gonadotropin responsiveness, oocyte maturation, and gametic contributions to preimplantation embryo development.
From this session, you should be able to:
1. To understand basic principles of maternal aging
2. To summarize genetic predispositions of premature ovarian failure
3. To demonstrate the role of epigenetics on oocytes and embryos over the life spectrum