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Table 2 Differences between LH and hCG

From: A review of luteinising hormone and human chorionic gonadotropin when used in assisted reproductive technology

  LH hCG
Secreted by Pituitary Embryo and placenta
Physiological role Support follicle development (14 days) Support implantation and pregnancy (282 days)
Binding affinity Lower Higher (2x)
Half-life Shorter (23 h sc) Longer (32–33 h sc)
Accumulation Slight Significant and down regulation of LH receptor
Stimulation of LH receptor Physiological Pharmacological, leading to LH receptor down regulation
Equivalency 6–8 IU of LH 1 IU of hCG
Purity 99% 99% purity for r-hCG and 70% in HP-hMG (39 identified contaminants)
Sources r-hLH r-hCG, urinary hCG or hMG
Induction of steroid (testosterone, oestradiol and progesterone) production Higher LH = higher steroid production Higher hCG = higher steroid production
Filling system Filled by mass Filled by Mass for r-hCG and Filled by IU for hCG/hMG
Gene activation Differential unexplained Differential unexplained
Cytokine production Differential unexplained Differential unexplained
Embryo quality production Not objectively proven Not objectively proven
  1. h hours; hCG human chorionic gonadotropin; IU international units; LH luteinising hormone; sc subcutaneous.