Premature ovarian failure (POF) is a common endocrine disease causing female infertility. It is characterized by high gonadotropin expression [follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) ≥ 40 mIU/mL], low estradiol (E2) expression, and follicular dysplasia in women aged less than 40 years . During 2007–2008, the term primary ovarian insufficiency (POI) was suggested to represent this dysfunction related to very early aging of the ovaries .
Causes of POF/POI are unknown and related to many complicated factors such as genetic defects , autoimmunity [4, 5], chemotherapy injury , and others; POF/POI can present as idiopathic . Currently, the prevention and treatment of POF are extremely limited.
The most commonly employed hormone replacement therapy cannot effectively recover ovarian function . Thus, the demand for novel and effective therapeutics for POF has increased. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are highly important in regenerative medicine because of their inherent regenerative properties [9, 10]. Many reports suggested that human mesenchymal stem cell (hMSC) transplantation was a promising treatment for POF . MSCs are multipotent stem cells that are easy to obtain and have poor immunogenicity [12, 13]. They can be harvested from several adult tissues, such as the bone marrow (BM), umbilical cord (UC), peripheral blood, adipose tissue (AD), placenta, and menstrual fluid
They are an excellent source of growth factors/cytokines. In this study, the recently published data on hMSC treatment of POF were summarized, and precise mechanisms underlying the effect of stem cells on POF were explored.