MRC Centre for Reproductive Health

Professor Jane Norman

Research interests, current research projects and the Edinburgh Tommy's Centre.

Professor Jane Norman

Professor of Maternal and Fetal Health, Deputy Director Centre for Reproductive Health.

  • MB ChB, MD, FRCOG, F MedSci, FRCP Edin
  • Director of the Edinburgh Tommy's Centre.
  • Vice-Principal People and Culture.

Contact details



The Queen's Medical Research Institute
47 Little France Cresent

Post Code
EH16 4TJ

Research in a nutshell

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Professor Jane Norman describes in her video her role as director in the Edinburgh Tommy's Centre

Research Interests

My research work focusses on the pregnancy “stressors” of obesity, maternal depression/stress, inflammation and hypoxia. These pregnancy stressors are largely responsible for the clinical conditions of gestational diabetes, preterm birth and stillbirth, all of which have devastating effects on pregnant women and their babies. My group aims to understand how these pregnancy stressors cause these clinical conditions and to develop preventive and therapeutic strategies. In all our research endeavours, we use a broad array of research strategies, from basic science, through animal models, to clinical trials and beyond to population based research to address these clinical problems.

Current research projects

  • STOPPIT 2: An open randomised trial of the Arabin pessary to prevent preterm birth in twin pregnancy (Funded by the National Institute of Health, Health Technology Assessment Board)

Visit the STOPPIT 2 website

  • AFFIRM: Does promoting increased awareness of decreased fetal movements reduce stillbirth, a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial? (Funded by the Chief Scientist Office, Scottish Executive HSRC, Tommy's and Sands).

Visit the AFFIRM website

  • Studies to understand the pathophysiology of parturition and to develop therapies for preterm birth prevention (Funded by Tommy's)

The Edinburgh Tommy's Centre

Professor Jane Norman is Director of the Edinburgh Tommy's Centre which is funded by the charity Tommy's. Opened in May 2008 it is located within the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health. The Tommy’s Centre aims to conduct world class research that will have a direct impact on the health of pregnant women and their babies and to translate our research into improved health outcomes both locally and worldwide.

Visit the Edinburgh Tommy's Centre website

Visit Tommy's the baby Charity website

Current Grants

2008 – 2017

Norman JE, Calder AA, Denison F, Reynolds R, Forbes S.  Core funding for Edinburgh Tommy’s Centre for Maternal and Fetal Health. Tommy’s the baby charity. £3,940,000

2012  -2017

Gray N, Norman JE, Girardi G, Granneman S. Poly(A)-binding proteins highlight the importance of regulated mRNA translation and stability in determining a functional materno-fetal interface. MRC Programme Grant. £1,494,491

2013 - 2017

Norman JE, Calderwood C, Cunningham Burley S, Scott J, Weir C, Chalmers J, Murdoch E, Stock SJ, Ross-Davie M, McAuliffe F, Geary M, Hunter AJ, Heazell A, Froen F.  Does promoting increased awareness of decreased fetal movements reduce stillbirth, a stepped wedge cluster randomised trial?  Chief Scientist Office, Scottish Executive, (HSRC), Tommy's and Sands. £330,000.

2014 - 2018

Norman JE, Shennan A, Robson S, Norrie J, Thornton S, Kilby M, Marlow N, Stock S, Smith J, Denton J, Bennett P, Cunningham Burley S. An open randomised trial of the Arabin pessary to prevent preterm birth in twin pregnancy - STOPPIT- 2. National Institute of Health, Health Technology Assessment Board. £1,327,029.

Ismail K, Toozs-Hobson P, Slack M, Ewer A, Gray J, Scott J, Israfil-Bayli F, Fleming L, Shennan A, Norman JE, Daniels J, Lees C, Middleton L, Simpson N. Suture Type for Incompetent Cervix and effect on Health outcomes. National Institute of Health, Health Technology Assessment Board. £1,090,069

Tarnow-Mordi W, Dibley M, Norman JE, Reynolds R, Callander E. Should we treat iron deficiency anaemia of pregnancy with lactoferrin? A randomised controlled trial. NHMRC (Australia). $ (AUD) 2,050,000

Coomarasamy A, Bourne T, Horne A, Norman JE, Jurkovic D, Farquharson R, Lumsden MA, Overton C, Roberts T, Harb H, Bender Atik R, Daniels J, Raine-Fening N, Quenby S, Middleton L, Gupta P Hinshaw K. Effectiveness of progesterone to prevent miscarriage in women with early pregnancy bleeding: A randomised placebo-controlled trial (PRISM Trial: PRogesterone In Spontaneous Miscarriage Trial). National Institute of Health, Health Technology Assessment Board.£1,756,618.

Denison FC, Norman JE, Norrie J, Scotland G, McPherson G, Lawton J, Brook-Smith S, Peace M, Clinton J, Clarkson C. A pragmatic adaptive sequential placebo controlled randomised trial to determine the effectiveness of Glycerin trinitrate for retained placenta (Got-it trial). National Institute of Health, Health Technology Assessment Board. £1,712,125

Flenady V, Gardener G, Middleton P, Coory M, Ellwood D, Crowther C, East C, Callander E, Norman JE, Boyle F. My baby’s movements. NHMRC (Australia) $ (AUD) 1,364,274

Publications on Google Scholar

Staff/group members

  • Marian Aldhous
  • Sara Rinaldi
  • Sofia Makieva
  • Hayley Moir
  • Elaine Jack
  • Sarah Stock
  • Sonia Whyte
  • Lorraine Adamson
  • Tariq Derdeb
  • Karen Witherspoon (PA)

PhD /MD Students

  • Ashley Boyle
  • Caroline Chiswick
  • Sarah Murray
  • Phoebe Kirkwood
  • Caterina Fazzi

Current Responsibilities



Vice-Principal People and Culture

  • Oversight of the University strategy and performance in the area of equality and diversity
  • Provide academic leadership and perspective on people strategies and organizational culture


Director of the Tommy’s Centre for Maternal and Fetal Health CRH lead for “Theme 3” of the Centre for Reproductive Health: Theme 3 “Developmental programming by steroid hormones and reproductive resilience”

National and International

1. Grant awarding committees: CSO Health Services Research 2012 onwards, GAPPs Preventing Preterm Birth Initiative, 2012 onwards.

2. Membership of research consortia: Deputy Lead, Reproductive Health and Childbirth Specialty Research Group (Scotland), 2012 onwards Global Obstetric Network (GONET) 2010 onwards; Vice Chair since 2013.

3. Work for specialist societies: Executive committee, British Maternal and Fetal Medicine Society, 2010 onwards Member of Council, Society for Gynecologic Investigation, 2011 onwards; Member of Council, Academy of Medical Sciences, 2015 onwards.

4. Trial management committees: Member of Data Monitoring Committee, INFANT study [Intelligent Fetal Monitoring and Assessment] HTA funded 2009 - 2016; Chair of Trial Steering Committee, EME funded Tablet study, 2011 onwards; Chair of Trial Steering Committee for Phoenix study (HTA funded) 2014 onwards.

5. Other National Activities: Member of the NETSCC, Health Technology Assessment programme – Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health Panel, 2013 onwards Member, National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit Clinical Trials Advisory Group, 2012 onwards; Chair, NICE Guideline Development Group, Preterm labour and birth, 2012 - 2015; Member, Stillbirth Subgroup, Child and Maternal Health Division of the Scottish Government Health and Social Care Directorates, 2011 onwards; Chair, Technical Advisory Group for Reproductive and Sexual health section of the International Classification of Disease, World Health Organisation), 2010 onwards; Board Member, Equality Challenge Unit, 2015 onwards.

Public engagement in science (lecture)

University of Edinburgh Medical detectives series: The mysteries of birth, far from elementary my dear Watson.