Effects of endocrine disrupting compounds on female fertility

Elsevier, Best Practice and Research: Clinical Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Volume 88, June 2023
Panagopoulos P., Mavrogianni D., Christodoulaki C., Drakaki E., Chrelias G., Panagiotopoulos D. et al.

Endocrine Disrupting Compounds or Chemicals (EDCs) constitute an extensive and varied group of mostly non-natural chemicals that have the ability to imitate any aspect of hormone action, perturbing many physiological functions in humans and animals. As for female fertility, several EDCs are associated with adverse effects in the regulation of steroidogenesis, higher miscarriage rates as well as lower fertilization and embryo implantation rates and some of them are considered to decrease the number of high-quality embryos in assisted reproductive technology (ART) pregnancy. The most common EDCs are pesticides, hexachlorobenzene (HCB), hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH) and especially phthalates and bisphenols which are used in thousands of products as plasticizers. Among all, Bisphenol A (BPA) is one of the most permeating and well-studied EDCs. BPA's action resembles that of estradiol affecting negatively the female reproductive system in various ways. This review summarizes the most recent literature on the impact of EDCs in female fertility.