Description of Research Expertise:
Research Interests: Dr Dokras directs the Penn Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) trans disciplinary research program.
Keywords: PCOS, androgens, metabolic risk, mood disorders, HRQOL
Research Details:PCOS is the commonest endocrine disorder in reproductive age women with a prevalence of 8-15%. It is associated with significant gynecological, dermatologic, metabolic and psychiatric co-morbidities. Our research program has two main interests; understanding long term cardiovascular morbidity and risk of depression and anxiety disorders in PCOS. Both cardiovascular disease (CVD) and mood disorders are associated with significantly physical and emotional morbidity and add significantly to the financial burden of the healthcare system.
Our studies have shown that young women with PCOS have an increased risk of obesity, dyslipidemia, metabolic syndrome and subclinical atherosclerosis compared to age matched controls. We are currently interested in understanding the determinants of CVD risk by performing studies at both cellular level (lipid phenotyping, HDL function) and population levels (impact of steroid hormones on lipids, studying role of androgens in subclinical atherosclerosis). Some of these studies are conducted in collaboration with Dr Dan Rader.
Our second area of interest is to better understand the risk of lowered health related quality of life (HRQOL), and increased risk of anxiety and mood disorders in PCOS. We were among the first groups to comprehensively demonstrate a fourfold increased risk of depression and anxiety in PCOS. We are interested in understanding the impact of interventions such as lifestyle change, hormonal contraception, CBT on HRQOL, mood and anxiety disorders.
Roe A, Hillman J, Butts S, Smith M, Rader D, Playford M, Mehta NN: Decreased cholesterol efflux capacity and atherogenic lipid profile in young women with PCOS. J Clin Endocrinol Metabol 99 (5): E841-847,2014.
Dokras A: Are Young Adult Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Slipping through the Healthcare Cracks? J Clin Endocrinol Metab 99 (5): 1583-1585,2014.
Milman L, DOkras A, Allison KC, Sarwer DV, Coutifaris C, Kris-Etherton PM, Kunselman AR, Stetter C, Dodson W: Improvement in health related quality of life (HRQOL) following weight loss and/or normalization of hyperandrogenism with continuous oral contraceptives (OC) in women with PCOS. Fertil Steril 102 (3): e247,2014.
Cardiovascular Disease Risk in Women with PCOS. Steroids 78 (8): 773-776,2013.
Roe AH, Prochaska E, Smith M, Sammel M: Using the Androgen Excess-PCOS Society Criteria to Diagnose Polycystic Ovary Syndrome and the Risk of Metabolic Syndrome in Adolescents. J Pediatr : 2012.
Dokras A: Anxiety disorders in women with PCOS: Systematic review and meta-analysis. Fertil Steril 97(1): : 2012.
Wild RA, Carmina E, Diamanti-Kandarakis E, Dokras A, Escobar-Morreale H, Futterweit W, Lobo RG, Norman RJ, Talbott E: Prevention of cardiovascular disease in women with polycystic ovary syndrome: A position statement by the Androgen Excess and PCOS Society. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 95(5):2038-49 : 2010.
Kerchner A, Lester W, Stuart S: The risk of depression and other mental health disorders in women with PCOS: A longitudinal study. Fertil Steril 91(1):207-12 : 2009.
Hollinrake B, Abrue A, Maifield M, VanVoorhis B: Increased risk of depression in women with PCOS. Fertil Steril 87(6):1369-76 : 2007.
Shroff R, Kirschner A, Maifield M, Van Beek EJ, Jagasia D: Young obese women with polycystic ovary syndrome have evidence of early coronary atherosclerosis J Clin Endocirnol Metab 92:4609-614 : 2007.