Clinical and molecular characterization of a large sample of patients with hypogonadotropic hypogonadism

Balasubramanian Bhagavath, Robert H. Podolsky, Metin Ozata, Erol Bolu, David P. Bick, Anita Kulharya, Richard J. Sherins, Lawrence C. Layman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

97 Scopus citations


Objective: To characterize the phenotype, modes of inheritance, karyotype, and molecular basis of patients with idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (IHH). Design: Review of medical records, karyotyping, and collation of gene mutation analysis. Setting: University molecular reproductive endocrinology laboratory. Patient(s): Patients with IHH. Intervention(s): Review of medical records, laboratory studies, and molecular studies. Main Outcome Measure(s): Sense of smell, severity of IHH (complete vs. incomplete), associated anomalies, karyotype, mutation analysis, and genotype/phenotype correlations were studied. Result(s): Of 315 patients with IHH, 6.3% had one or more affected relatives. Autosomal recessive inheritance was likely in most of these familial cases, but autosomal-dominant and X-linked recessive inheritance patterns were likely in some families. Complete IHH was more commonly found in males (62%), whereas incomplete IHH was more commonly observed in females (54.3%). Anosmia was present in 31.3% of males and 27.9% of females. The karyotype was normal in all 19 females tested, but was abnormal in 3 of 57 (5.3%) of males tested. Although cryptorchidism did not differ among those who were anosmic vs. normosmic, it was approximately four times more common in patients with complete IHH than incomplete IHH (15.3% vs. 3.9%). Approximately 10% of the IHH patients tested had mutations in either the GNRHR or KAL1 gene. Conclusion(s): Idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism is a heterogeneous disorder affecting fertility, in which the number of familial cases is probably underestimated. Further study of genes that regulate hypothalamic-pituitary development and function will likely reveal important information regarding the development of normal puberty in humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)706-713
Number of pages8
JournalFertility and sterility
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2006


  • Gene mutation
  • Gonadotropin releasing hormone deficiency
  • Idiopathic hypogonadotropic hypogonadism
  • Kallmann syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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