The University of Southampton

Professor Nicholas Stephen Macklon MB ChB, MD, FRCOG

Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Honorary Consultant Gynaecologist , Director, Complete Fertility Centre, Southampton

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Professor Nicholas Stephen Macklon is Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology within Medicine at the University of Southampton.

Nick Macklon trained in Edinburgh, and carried out his doctoral research in Glasgow before taking a Fellowship in Fetal Medicine in Rotterdam where he was subsequently appointed Senior Lecturer and Director of the Assisted Conception Unit. In 2005 he was appointed Professor of Periconceptional Medicine and Infertility at the Utrecht University Medical Centre, where he became Head of the Department of Reproductive Medicine and Gynaecology. In 2009 he was appointed to the Chair in Obstetrics and Gynaecology in Southampton, where he is also Director of the Complete Fertility Centre Southampton.

Professor Macklon has published more than 100 Pubmed cited articles in the fields of ovarian stimulation and endometrial receptivity.
In addition to contributing chapters to standard texts in the field, he has published two books, the award winning IVF in the Medically Complicated Patient, and more recently the Textbook of Periconceptional Medicine. External appointments include Past Chairman of the ESHRE Special Interest Group on Reproductive Endocrinology, Founding Board Member of the Dutch Society of Reproductive Medicine. He is currently editorial board member of Reproduction, Fertility and Sterility and Reproductive Biomedicine Online. He holds Visiting Professorships in Adelaide University, Australia, and Utrecht University, The Netherlands.


MB, ChB, University of Edinburgh (1987)
Membership of Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (1992)
Diploma in Advanced Obstetric Ultrasound RCOG & RCR (1994)
MD, University of Edinburgh (1996)
UK Specialist Register (No. 3265453) (1996-present)
Dutch Specialist Register (S.R.C.) (1997-present)
Fellowship of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (2005)
Subspecialist in Reproductive Medicine, Dutch College of O and G (2006-present)

Appointments held

Professor and Head of Department, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Southampton (2009-present)

Director, Complete Fertility Centre Southampton (HFEA Person Responsible) (2009-present)

Honorary Professor of Periconceptional Medicine, University Medical Centre Utrecht (2009-present)

Head, Dept of Reproductive Medicine and Gynaecology, UMC Utrecht (2008–2009)

Professor of Infertility and Periconceptional Medicine and Consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, UMC Utrecht (2005–2009)

Senior Lecturer in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam (1997-2005)

Head, Division of Reproductive Medicine (2004-2005)

Head, Obstetrics and Gynaecology Outpatient Clinic (2000-2001)

Deputy Head, Division of Reproductive Medicine (1999-2003)

Head, Assisted Conception Unit (1997-2001)

Clinical Lecturer and Senior Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Glasgow (1994-1997)

Subspecialist Fellow in Fetal-Maternal Medicine, Erasmus Medical Centre Rotterdam (1995-1996)

Academic Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Glasgow (1993-1994)

Research Fellow in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Glasgow (1992-1993)

Specialist Registrar in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (1991-1992)

Senior House Officer in Neonatal Paediatrics, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (1989-1990)

Senior House Officer in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh (1988-1989)

House Officer in Surgery Hereford County Hospital (1988)

House Officer in Medicine, Eastern General Hospital Edinburgh (1987-1988)





Research interests

The major challenge which remains to be addressed in the treatment of infertility is failure of the embryo to implant. Moreover, peri-implantation and periconceptional events are now recognized as key determinants of perinatal outcomes and long term health in the offspring. My groups current research therefore focuses on developing novel means of assessing and modulating endometrial receptivity in the human, embryo-endometrial interactions, and periconceptional determinants of health.

I currently supervise a number of PhD projects in these fields in Utrecht and Southampton, as listed above.

Our newly built tertiary Fertility Centre which includes IVF treatment provides a superb setting in which to pursue our work in these fields. Our location adjacent to the Institute of Developmental Science, within the Academic Unit of Human Developmental Health, provides a unique combination of facilities and collaborative opportunities to further our work in this field.

Current ongoing research themes include:

The embryo selection window and recurrent miscarriage

Working with Jan Brosens, we have developed a novel paradigm for the role of human decidualised endometrium to sense embryo quality and prevent implantation of poorly viable embryos. We are now investigating how this selection mechansism may be disrupted in women with recurrent miscarriage.

The fate of the early human embryo

Our group coined the now widely used term describing the ‘Black Box of early Pregnancy Loss’ Over the past few years we have carried out a number of studies aimed understanding the fate of the preimplantation and post implantation human embryo. These studies involve in-vitro culture system to study chromosome repair mechanisms, and longitudinal studies of determinants of implantation failure. We are also exploring new markers for in-vivo conception in the human.

The study of the impact of nutritional status on the human reproductive tract

Having pioneered the analysis of endometrial secretions to determine the receptivity of the uterus to implantation, we are now working with Judith Eckert and Franchesca Houghton to develop this technique to allow interrogation of the nutritional environment of the preimplantation human embryo. This work will enable us to identify modulatable factors to optimise this environment and lead to new interventions aimed at increasing succeful implantation and crucial early growth.

Periconceptional intervention studies to improve fertility outcomes

Lifestyle factors have been shown to be major determinants of fertility and the success of fertility treatments like IVF. Our group has been one of those pioneering the introduction of preconceptional health optimisation into routine fertility treatment programs. Linked to this is an ongoing program of intervention studies aimed at refining these interventions.

Academic unit(s)

Human Development and Health Academic Units

Affiliate academic unit(s)

Human development and physiology Research group

Research project(s)

Linking perturbed maternal environment during periconceptional development, due to diabetes, obesity or assisted reproductive technologies, and altered health during ageing

Mechanisms by which assisted conception treatments may affect embryo development and health into adulthood.

Head of Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Leader of HDH Research Program ‘Mother, Pregnancy and Child .
Supervising ACFs
Lecturing on BM programme
Group tuition to 3rd and 5th year Medical Students
Supervising Student research projects
Invited speaker at international symposia
Consultant to various biotech companies
Visiting Professor of reproductive Medicine in Adelaide and Utrecht
External Assessor for University of Valencia Medical School
Member of MRC Unit Quinquennial Review board.
Director of Complete Fertility Centre Southampton.
Leading research groups in Southampton and Utrecht
Supervising PhD and MD students

Postgraduate student supervision

Past PhD Projects supervised

N. Beckers Novel Interventions in the Luteal Phase after Assisted Reproduction 2006
E.Heijnen New paradigms in IVF treatments 2006
M.Verberg Clinical Outcomes from Mild IVF Strategies 2007
C. de Klerk Psychological Aspects of Assisted Reproduction 2008
A. Badawy Novel approaches to ovulation induction 2008
M. vd. Gaast Endometrial Receptivity in Assisted Reproduction 2009
J. Boxmeer Nutritional Determinants of Outcome in Infertility Treatment. 2009
C.Boomsma Immunological Determinants of Endometrial Receptivity 2009
A. Darwish Clinical studies in reconstructive fertility surgery 2009
G. Teklenburg Preimplantation embryo-signalling 2010
M. Sterrenburg Reducing the burden of ovarian stimulation 2011

Current PhD projects supervised

M. Santos Early embryo development
O.Hamdine Refining the GnRH antagonist protocol
H. Ockhuysen Periconceptional interventions for stress reduction in IVF and recurrent miscarriage
Y. Koot The endometrial factor in infertility and early pregnancy loss.
L. Weimar Molecular mechanisms in implantation failure
G. Meng Environmental determinants of ovarian function
S. Lu Intrauterine monitoring

Lecturing to undergraduate and postgraduates

Clinical teaching and tutorials

Project supervision and assessment

Professor Nicholas Stephen Macklon
Faculty of Medicine, University of Southampton, Southampton General Hospital, Mailpoint 801, South Academic Block, Tremona Road, Southampton, SO16 6YD or Faculty of Medicine, University of Southampton, Building 85, Life Sciences Building, Highfield Campus, Southampton, SO171BJ


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