Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, especially Assisted Conception at the Department for Clinical Science, Intervention and Technology since 1998.
Outi Hovatta studies the causes and treatment of involuntary childlessness, genetic causes of infertility, and improvement and optimisation of in vitro fertilisation (IVF). One area of focus is treatments that maintain fertility, which entail maturation of immature egg cell membranes in culture. Freezing ovarian and testicular tissue before cytostatic or radiation therapy has been developed into clinical treatments.
Since 2001, she has been establishing human embryonic stem cell lines. Starting in 2012, there have been clinically useful embryonic stem cell lines produced in chemically defined cultures with only human proteins and without any serum or support cells. Many groups collaborate on clinical treatments, which aim at cell therapies for severe illnesses. Induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells from ordinary somatic cells are also an important part of Hovatta's research.