Prof. Joyce Harper


Prof. Joyce Harper

Human Genetics and Embryologist

Prof. Joyce Harper is Professor of Human Genetics and Embryology at University College London in the Institute for Women's Health where she is head of the Reproductive Health Department, Principal Investigator of the Embryology, IVF and Reproductive Genetics Group, Director of Education and Director of the Centre for Reproductive Health. She is a Director of the Embryology and PGD Academy which she established with Alpesh Doshi in 2014 and founder of Global Women Connected.

She has set up two MSc programmes: Prenatal Genetics and Fetal Medicine in1996 and Reproductive Science and Women's Health in 2009 and oversaw the setting up for the MSc in Women's Health in 2018. She has been working in the fields of IVF and reproductive genetics since 1987, written over 170 scientific papers and published two textbooks.

Joyce has had many senior roles in the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE), including being on the executive, the chair of the special interest group in Reproductive Genetics, co-establishing the ESHRE PGD Consortium, a member of the original team who set up the ESHRE embryology certificate, a member of the PGS task force and a member of the culture media working group. She was a director of the British Fertility Society and a founding member of the PGD International Society. She was a director of the International Society of Prenatal Diagnosis where she was responsible for establishing special interest groups. She is chair of the HFEA Horizon Scanning Group and an advisor to the HFEA Science and Clinical Advances Advisory Committee. She is a member of the Nuffield Council for Bioethics working group on genome editing. She has just been elected as a director of the International Society of IVF.

Her research includes preimplantation genetic diagnosis, chromosome abnormalities in embryos, factors affecting preimplantation development, comparison of in vivo and in vitro development, differences in culture media, embryo selection methods, sperm DNA damage and legal, social and ethical issues surrounding IVF and reproductive genetics including gamete donation and surrogacy. Joyce has been involved in several questionnaire and survey studies, including focus groups, face-to-face interviews, and larger questionnaires using qualtrics. She is currently involved in a national survey regarding social egg freezing in collaboration with Kylie Baldwin from De Montford University. She has also been involved in a EpiHealth questionnaire study of culture media in collaboration with Daniel Brison from Manchester University.

Joyce is passionate about public engagement to discuss all aspects of women's health, including wellbeing. She has established a public engagement group with daily posts - Joyce is writing a book covering women's health from birth to death. She is deputy chair of the UK Fertility Education Initiative, trying to improve fertility awareness in the UK.

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