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Professor Martin Johnson MA PhD FRCOG FRSB FMedSci FRS

History of reproductive and developmental biology since 1945
Professor Martin Johnson, MA PhD FRCOG FRSB FMedSci FRS

Emeritus Professor of Reproductive Sciences (retired)

Office Phone: +44 (0) 1223 333777, Fax: +44 (0) 1223 333786

Research Interests

Currently, my main interest is in the history of the reproductive and developmental sciences and their historical relationship to the development of human IVF and other clinical technologies, and to their regulation legally and ethically.

I am joint senior editor of Reproductive BioMedicine and Society Online (RBMS). I also co-edited the proceedings of the seventh seminar of the Cambridge Socio-legal Group called Birth Rites and Rights published by Hart Publishing. The 8th Edition of Essential Reproduction (Wiley Blackwell Science) was published in March 2018.



Professor Sarah Franklin, Sociology, Cambridge
Dr Nick Hopwood, History and Philosophy of Science, Cambridge

Key Publications

M.H. Johnson (2019) A short history of in vitro fertilization (IVF).  Int. J. Dev. Biol. 63, 83-92.

 M.H. Johnson (2019) IVF: The women who helped make it happen. Reprod Biomed Soc  8, 1-6.

M.H. Johnson, N. Hopwood (2018) Law and Regulation. In: (Eds. N Hopwood, R Fleming, L. Kassell) Reproduction: Antiquity to the present day.  CUP, Cambridge. Pp. 597=611.

M.H. Johnson (2018) The professional hostility confronting Edwards, Steptoe and Purdy in their pioneering work on IVF. In: (eds. Kovacs, G., Brinsden, P., & Decherney, A.) In-Vitro Fertilization: The Pioneers’ History. CUP, Cambridge. Pp. 41-49

Elder K, Johnson MH, (2015), The Oldham Notebooks: an analysis of the development of IVF 1969-1978, Six papers in Reproductive BioMedicine and Society, 1, 3-70

Wong CC, Johnson MH, (2014), Therapy for mitochondrial genetic disease: are we at the thin end of the wedge? Reproductive BioMedicine Online, 29, 147-149

Arnaiz I, Johnson MH, Cook DI, Day ML, (2013), Changing expression of chloride channels during preimplantation mouse development, Reproduction, 145, 73-84

Johnson MH, (2013), Tri-parenthood – a simply misleading term or an ethically misguided approach? Reproductive BioMedicine Online, 26, 516-519

Johnson MH, Theodosiou AA, (2012), PGD and the making of the genetic embryo as a political tool, in Regulating PGD: A Comparative and Theoretical Analysis, (Ed. McLean, S.) Routledge, London, UK

Theodosiou AA, Johnson MH, (2011), The politics of human embryo research and the motivation to achieve PGD, Reproductive BioMedicine Online, 22, 457– 471