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Reproductive Biotechnology Unit

The Reproductive Biotechnology Group has an international reputation in reproductive biology and the development of associated technologies for biomedical and agricultural applications.

In collaboration with a number of university, institute and hospital research groups in Australia as well as overseas, our current focus is regenerative medicine and human assisted reproduction technology (ART)—more commonly known as in vitro fertilisation (IVF).

Over the past ten years, the demand for organ transplantation has rapidly increased around the world. This is the result of the improved success of transplant procedures and increased incidence of organ failures. However, donations have not kept up with the demand and developing requirements. There is a global shortage of human organ, tissue and cell donors.

Our current research in regenerative medicine (i.e. organ, tissue and cell replacement therapies) is focused on characterising a new embryonic stem cell, which will impact on the development of cell based therapies for a range of diseases and injuries where no effective treatment currently exists. Meanwhile, our IVF research is focused on overcoming the need for hormonal stimulation—which is about half the cost of an IVF cycle. The Reproductive Biotechnology Group is also involved in major advances in vitro oocyte maturation and embryo culture, which continue to be very relevant to the development of ART.

Our other research includes the development of molecular selection markers for improving livestock growth and reproductive performance—the latter of which may have implications for overcoming early embryonic loss and recurrent miscarriage in humans.

Lead researcher: Associate Professor Mark Nottle

Research team

  • Dr Ivan Vassiliev
Research support
  • Stephen McIlfatrick
  • Jessica Zemitis (South Australian Research and Development Institute)
  • Anika Bunz (PhD candidate)


  • Associate Professor Jeremy Thompson, the University of Adelaide
  • Professor Michelle Lane, the University of Adelaide
  • Professor Peter Cowan, Immunology Research Centre, St Vincent’s Hospital, Victoria
  • Professor Stefan Hiendleder, the University of Adelaide
  • Professor Toby Coates, Centre for Clinical and Experimental Transplantation, Royal Adelaide Hospital

Interested in undertaking a postgraduate research degree with us?

We offer exciting opportunities for researchers at the honours, masters and PhD levels. Our research degrees are open to students from a broad range of backgrounds, and range from basic sciences to clinical research. If you are interested in human health, consider furthering your research career with us.