Welcome from the Director and Executive Director
Welcome to the Northwestern Center for Reproductive Science (CRS). We cannot think of a more exciting or important time to be involved in reproductive science and medicine!
Reproduction matters. Just think:
- The male and female reproductive systems are essential for giving rise to the next generation and for maintaining endocrine function. Reproductive hormones are essential for general health as they contribute to cognitive, cardiovascular, bone, and immune system functions.
- Colliding epidemics of infectious diseases, obesity, and diabetes challenge our reproductive health and future - along with iatrogenic insults (chemotherapy and radiation), environmental contaminants, and delayed child-bearing.
- Reproductive science and medicine will guide evolving and emerging treatments related to contraception, infertility, reproductive tract conditions,
cancers, infectious diseases, and pregnancy-related disorders.
The Center for Reproductive Science leads the way. Reproductive science and medicine through the CRS extends from basic research on cellular and molecular mechanisms to physiological integration across organ systems to clinical practices that impact fertility and health. Our scientific and medical discoveries are intertwined with significant moral, ethical and political questions.
Since its formal inception in 1987, the CRS has been at the forefront of reproductive science and medicine research. Professor Neena Schwartz was the first to characterize inhibin in follicular fluid and Professor Erwin Goldberg was the first to identify the male germ cell-specific enzyme LDH-C4. Building on this foundation with strong institutional support, the CRS today includes nearly 200 faculty members and 100 trainees that together have discovered placental hormones, revealed signaling pathways in reproductive tract disease, solved the structures of key reproductive hormones, characterized major hormone biosynthetic pathways, and developed new fertility preservation strategies. This rich environment has fueled the reproductive science and medicine pipeline, nurturing generations of reproductive scientists who today assume leadership positions in academics, medicine, industry, journalism, policy, and beyond.
Our reproductive science community is vibrant, and we garner success from innovative collaborations and technologies. We are at the crossroads of multiple disciplines, including medicine, physiology, chemistry, molecular and cellular biology, genetics, biomaterials engineering, religion, anthropology, law, and bioethics.
The CRS offers a wide array of resources, programming, and funding opportunities in reproductive science and medicine, and we invite you to dive into our website to learn more.
Teresa K. Woodruff, PhD
Francesca E. Duncan, PhD
Executive CRS Director