Potential roles of genistein in polycystic ovary syndrome: A comprehensive systematic review

Eur J Pharmacol. 2022 Oct 15;933:175275. doi: 10.1016/j.ejphar.2022.175275. Epub 2022 Sep 13.


Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most prevalent polygenic endocrine disorders in reproductive-age women. Genistein is a soy-isolated phytoestrogen and isoflavone with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, estrogenic, and antineoplastic activity. This systematic review aimed to investigate the therapeutic effects and mechanisms of actions of genistein in PCOS. The present study was conducted according to the guidelines of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) protocol. We searched PubMed, Scopus, Embase, and Google Scholar databases up to February 2022 using relative keywords. Studies published in English evaluated genistein's effects on PCOS, and its related symptoms were considered. Out of 298 records screened, only 13 articles met the inclusion criteria: Nine animal and 4 human studies. The results of the current study indicated that genistein supplementation may effectively improve PCOS-related symptoms by decreasing insulin resistance and anthropometric indices, improving ovarian morphology and regulating reproductive hormones, and reducing oxidative stress and inflammation by influencing biological pathways. According to the current literature, genistein may diminish the dues of PCOS. Therefore, this study shows that genistein can be considered an effective agent. in reducing the complications of PCOS. However, further studies are recommended for a broad conclusion on the exact mechanism of genistein in PCOS patients.

Keywords: Genistein; Polycystic ovary syndrome; Systematic review.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants
  • Female
  • Genistein / pharmacology
  • Genistein / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance* / physiology
  • Phytoestrogens / pharmacology
  • Phytoestrogens / therapeutic use
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome* / drug therapy


  • Antioxidants
  • Phytoestrogens
  • Genistein