Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics

, Volume 29, Issue 11, pp 1289–1297 | Cite as

The follicular microenviroment as a predictor of pregnancy: MALDI-TOF MS lipid profile in cumulus cells

  • Daniela Antunes Montani
  • Fernanda Bertuccez Cordeiro
  • Thaís Regiani
  • Amanda Begati Victorino
  • Eduardo Jorge Pilau
  • Fábio Cesar Gozzo
  • Christina Ramires Ferreira
  • Renato Fraietta
  • Edson Guimarães Lo Turco
Technological Innovations



This research proposed to study the changes in lipid composition in cumulus cells (CCs) from women who achieved pregnancy compared with women who did not, after in vitro fertilization treatment. This approach has the potential to provide novel information on the lipid metabolism of the CCs and as an additional method to predict pregnancy.


Fifty-four samples from couples with tubal and male factor infertility and where the female partner was age 35 or younger were divided in two groups according to their level of hCG 14 days after embryo transfer as follows: (1) 23 samples in pregnant group and (2) 31 samples in non-pregnant group. Lipid extraction was performed by the Bligh-Dyer protocol, and lipid profiles were obtained by MALDI-TOF MS. Mass spectra data were processed with MassLynx, and statistical analysis was performed using MarkerLynx extended statistic. OPLS-DA model was built.


S-plot Analysis revealed three ions as potential markers in the pregnant group, and five ions in the non-pregnant group. These ions were identified in the human metabolome database (HMDB) as phosphatidylcholine in the pregnant group and as phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylserine and phosphatidylinositol species in the non-pregnant group. These lipids might be involved in cell proliferation and differentiation, apoptosis and GAP junction regulation.


We conclude that MALDI-TOF MS can be used as an informative and fast analytical strategy to obtain and study the lipid profile of cumulus cells and can potentially be used as a supporting tool to predict pregnancy based on the metabolic state of the CCs.


Cumulus cell Lipid profile MALDI-TOF MS Pregnancy outcome 



Funding for the study was provided by the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP) process no 2010/14732-5.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daniela Antunes Montani
    • 1
  • Fernanda Bertuccez Cordeiro
    • 1
  • Thaís Regiani
    • 1
  • Amanda Begati Victorino
    • 1
  • Eduardo Jorge Pilau
    • 2
  • Fábio Cesar Gozzo
    • 2
  • Christina Ramires Ferreira
    • 2
  • Renato Fraietta
    • 1
  • Edson Guimarães Lo Turco
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Surgery, Division of Urology, Human Reproduction SectionSao Paulo Federal UniversitySao PauloBrazil
  2. 2.Institute of ChemistryUniversity of CampinasCampinasBrazil

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