About us

The HOPE website was developed as part of a multidisciplinary project in collaboration with the University of Edinburgh’s MRC Centre for Reproductive Health, the RSE Young Academy of Scotland and NHS Lothian.

About us

Jackie Maybin Photo

Dr Jacqueline Maybin

I am a Senior Research Fellow in the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh and Consultant Gynaecologist in NHS Lothian. I run specialist gynaecology clinics to investigate and manage people who experience problematic menstruation. My research focuses on increasing our understanding of menstruation and what causes menstrual disorders. The aim is to improve quality of life by developing preventive and therapeutic strategies for those with problematic menstruation.

I am a member of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, the Society for Reproduction and Fertility, the Society for Endocrinology, the Society for Reproductive Investigation and the RSE Young Academy of Scotland.

View Dr Jackie Maybin's profile page.

Rebecca Warren Photograph

Dr Rebecca Warren

I am a teacher of physics at St George’s School for Girls in Edinburgh. I actively promote STEM engagement through pupil-led research projects, digital exchanges, after-school clubs and outreach events. I am passionate about getting more girls interested in physics and engineering. As part of the programme ‘Researchers in Schools’ I completed a secondment to the Department for Education, where I authored a report on the retention and recruitment of STEM teachers worldwide.

Prior to teaching, I was a post-doctoral fellow in biophysics at Karolinska Institute in Sweden. I was educated at the Universities of Edinburgh, Oxford and Glasgow, and was a visiting researcher at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. My research interests have included radiocarbon dating offsets, microrheology and cochlear mechanics.

Hilary Critchley Photograph

Professor Hilary Critchley

I am a Professor of Reproductive Medicine and Head of Deanery of Clinical Sciences at the University of Edinburgh, a Consultant Gynaecologist at the Royal Infirmary, Edinburgh and Co-Deputy Director, MRC Centre for Reproductive Health. I am a clinical academic whose research programme focuses upon disorders of menstruation and am passionate about improving treatment options and raising awareness for a common disorder that impacts one in four women. I have Co-Chaired an International Agreement Process for terminologies /definitions and a classification system for abnormalities of menstrual bleeding, supported by the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) and remain a member of the FIGO Menstrual Disorders Committee (MDC). My expertise in this field has national and international recognition. I am a Fellow of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. I am an advocate for mentorship in supporting the careers of Clinical and non-Clinical Academics.

View Professor Hilary Critchley's profile page

Andrew McKechanie photograph

Dr Andrew McKechanie

I am a consultant psychiatrist in intellectual disability, based in and around Edinburgh. I also work at The University of Edinburgh researching intellectual disabilities and autism, and some of the genetic conditions that can be associated with these. I am on the board of Scottish Autism, the largest provider of autism-specific services in Scotland.

View Dr Andrew McKechanie's profile

Aleks Tsolova photograph

Ms Aleks Tsolova

I am a science PhD student investigating how new treatments for heavy menstrual bleeding affect the womb lining (endometrium).

I am looking at how a new tablet based treatment affects the behaviour of the cells in the endometrium to see if it is a safe and effective treatment that could be used long term by those experiencing period problems.

Emilie Combet photo

Dr Emilie Combet

I am a senior lecturer in Human nutrition at the University of Glasgow. My research focuses on food and nutrition through the lifecycle, with a special interest on its impact on health.

View Dr Emilie Combet's profile page

Alison Murray photograph

Dr Alison Murray

I am a laboratory based scientist who has been working on female reproduction for 30 years. I am currently involved in researching the molecular causes of abnormal uterine bleeding with particular focus on hormonal control of endometrial function.

I work in the laboratory of Professor Hilary Critchley within the Centre for Reproductive Health at the QMRI University of Edinburgh.

Siobhan O’Connor photograph

Dr Siobhan O’Connor

I am a Lecturer in Nursing at the University of Edinburgh and teach health informatics (eHealth) at undergraduate and postgraduate level. My clinical research explores how different technologies can be co-designed, implemented and used by patients, carers and nurses to support self-management of illness and promote healthy lifestyles and behaviours. These digital tools might include telehealth or telecare, mobile health applications (mHealth), online or web-based health services, gaming, and wearable or assisted living devices. Emerging technologies such as virtual reality, avatars, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) are also research areas of interest. I am an Associate Editor at the International Journal of Older People Nursing, Treasurer of the RSE Young Academy of Scotland and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

View Dr Siobhan O' Connor's profile page.

Rocio Martinez Aguilar photograph

Ms Rocío Martínez Aguilar

I am a Spanish postdoctoral researcher at the MRC Centre of Reproductive Health (University of Edinburgh) where I am investigating what causes heavy periods. I have always been interested in this area: both my master’s project and PhD were studying how stem cells that are found in menstrual blood could be used as treatments for medical disorders.

I am very enthusiastic about unravelling the ins and outs of periods – knowledge is power – and I’d love to contribute to the generation of a more just and comprehensive society.

Aude Le Guennec photograph

Dr Aude Le Guennec

Design Anthropologist and member of the Young Academy of Scotland (RSE), I am an Assistant Professor at the School of Textiles and Design, Heriot-Watt University. From my academic background and first career as a Museum Director, I have developed a specific interest in the way fashion informs society. Specialising in Children’s material culture, I have completed a PhD addressing the socialisation of children through fashion and clothing from the 18th century onwards (Sorbonne University). As a curator and consultant, I explore innovative approaches of an inclusive, sustainable and educational children’s fashion. I publish extensively and share my approach of an inclusive and sustainable children’s material culture around the globe.

View Dr Aude Le Guennec's profile page

Varsha Jain photograph

Dr Varsha Jain

I am a gynaecology doctor who is currently researching why women bleed heavily when they have conditions such as fibroids (collections of muscle growth in the womb) or adenomyosis (cells from the lining of the womb are found in the muscle layer of the womb). My PhD fellowship is being funded by Wellbeing of Women. I work in Professor Hilary Critchley’s team at the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health, University of Edinburgh.

Moira Nicol photograph

Dr Moira Nicol

I am a research scientist working in the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh.  My research is laboratory based and I work closely with Professor Critchley and Dr Maybin on the mechanisms of normal menstruation to help us understand what causes abnormal menstrual bleeding.

Alistair Williams photograph

Professor Alistair Williams

I am Emeritus Professor of Gynaecological Pathology in the University of Edinburgh. I have long experience as a diagnostic pathologist assessing the microscopic appearances of the human endometrium – the lining of the womb - which undergoes complex changes both in the healthy menstrual cycle, and in patients with menstrual disorders. I have research interests in the effects that natural hormones have on the endometrium, as well as the effects of various drugs used in contraception, hormone replacement therapy and in the treatment of menstrual abnormalities.

View Professor Alistair Williams profile page