The aging oocyte--can mitochondrial function be improved?

Fertil Steril. 2013 Jan;99(1):18-22. doi: 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2012.11.031.


In recent years, social and cultural trends have resulted in women delaying childbirth, thereby leading to reproductive senescence as a growing public health problem. We discuss potential etiologies for age-related female reproductive decline. We bring supportive evidence to the central role of mitochondrial dysfunction and oxygen radicals in the process of aging in general and reproductive senescence specifically. We also explore the role of coenzyme Q10 deficiency as a contributing factor and the effects of its administration.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cellular Senescence / physiology*
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Mitochondria / physiology*
  • Oocytes / physiology*
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Reproduction / physiology*
  • Ubiquinone / analogs & derivatives
  • Ubiquinone / deficiency


  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Ubiquinone
  • coenzyme Q10