Edinburgh Fertility Preservation

About us

Insight into the operations of Edinburgh Fertility Preservation

Watch an animation about childhood cancer and fertility created by Rod Mitchell and Madalena Paiva Chaves: Click here

Due to the improved survival rates from many cancers, there is increasing attention on how cancer treatment can adversely affect the subsequent quality of life. For young people, among the most important of these are effects on fertility. Fertility preservation options are available for some patients; however, for others including young boys there are no such options, with an urgent need for more research.

Edinburgh Fertility Preservation (EFP) was founded by a group of clinicians and scientists working at the University of Edinburgh and hospitals within Edinburgh. Our aim is to develop procedures for fertility preservation in children and young adults, usually cancer patients, who are due to undergo treatment which may compromise their long-term fertility.

A major component of fertility preservation involves cryopreserving or 'freezing' tissue, and we are the first and currently the only centre in the UK with approval to cryopreserve both ovary and testis tissue. Our research focuses on the germ cells in these tissues and their development into sperm and eggs.

We aim to fulfil both clinical and scientific roles in the field of fertility preservation, with the diverse professional backgrounds of our team making this possible.

Below is a schematic of the progression of research at EFP. If you are using a screenreader,  the information is available below as a text PDF format : 


Steps of the progression of research at EFP.


EFP logo

About the EFP logo

The triskele shape of our logo is a Celtic fertility symbol. Each of the three spirals represents one of the three trimesters of pregnancy, tracing the three-month spiral path of the sun in the sky as it cycles from equinox to solstice and back again.