Plastics, Pills and Painkillers: Effects of In-utero Exposures on Male Reproductive Health
Tuesday 7th September, 2021. 3PM EST/ 8PM GMT / 9PM CET
PROF. ROD MITCHELL
Rod is Professor of Developmental Endocrinology at the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh. He is also a Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist at The Royal Hospital for Children and Young People in Edinburgh.
His research interests are focused on the role of the germ-stem cell niche on germ cell development in the fetal and prepubertal testis. This includes investigating the effect of exposure to proposed environmental ‘endocrine disrupting chemicals’ (EDC’s) on human fetal testis development. Exposure to several such agents have been postulated to increase the risk of developing male reproductive disorders including infertility and testicular cancer.
His group have shown the impact of several proposed ‘EDC’s’, including analgesics commonly used during pregnancy, on the development of the human fetal testis in terms of testosterone production and germ cell development. These studies include the use of a xenograft approach developed in his laboratory. Importantly, these studies have highlighted some important differences between rodent and human in terms of the effect of such exposures on the testis. In addition to his interests in EDC’s he also has a clinical and research interest in fertility preservation for young males treated for cancer. Edinburgh recently became the first UK Centre to develop a fertility preservation programme to store testicular tissue from young boys with cancer prior to their treatment, as part of the 'Edinburgh Fertility Preservation’ programme, for which Rod is the lead for male fertility preservation.