Prof. Robert G Edwards

International Awards

Grand Hamdan International Award - Obstetrics & Gynecology
2001-2002
Professor Bob Edwards was born in Leeds, United Kingdom on 27th September 1925. He was educated in Manchester Central High School between 1936-1944. He then served in the British Army and was based in Palestine, Jordan and Egypt. He gained his BSc from the University of Bangor, Wales in 1951.
He went on to gain his PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 1955. He carried out much research in animals, but desired to apply his knowledge for patients' benefit, and succeeded with colleagues in fertilizing the human egg in 1969. This work led to studies on infertility, preimplantation genetic diagnosis, and human stem cells.
 
Then Professor Edwards working from Cambridge University applied IVF clinically with Patrick Steptoe who worked in the Oldham and District General Hospital. In 1978 Louise Brown, the world's first test-tube baby was born as a result of the collaboration between them. They also established Bourn Hall Clinic, the world's first IVF Clinic in 1980 and surpassed more than 1000 births by 1988, the year of Steptoe's death. More than one million babies have now been born as a result of the techniques of in vitro fertilization.
 
Edwards founded the hugely successful European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) in 1985, which has just held its 18th annual meeting.
 
He also founded its three journals, Human Reproduction, Molecular Human Reproduction, and Human Reproduction Update which all reached the top of the impact factor. He is currently Chief Editor of Reproductive Biomedicine Online, a web and print journal, which publishes papers rapidly on web first and then in print.
He has published over 500 scientific papers and many textbooks including "A Matter of Life with Patrick Steptoe" in 1980 (published by Hutchinsons), "Conception in the Human Female" (Academic Press, 1980) and "Principles and Practice of Assisted Human Reproduction" (with S. Brody) in 1996.
 
He has been granted several honorary DSc degrees, including his own University (Cambridge), which recently granted him its own ScD (Hon) Cantab.
 
He received the first Bertarelli Foundation Award in Reproductive Healthcare in 2000 and FIGO also honoured him in the same year with its Distinguished Investigation Award. He was the winner of the 2001 Lasker Clinical Medical Research Award. He is an Honorary Fellow of the IFFS. He has also been awarded many civil honours from various countries, including the Gold Medal from the City of Toulouse, an Honorary Citizen of Bordeaux, France and the Keys of San Diego City in the USA.
 
And his most recent awards include the Scientific Award of the American Infertility Association and Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award by the Reproductive Biology professional Group of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine, which he will receive in October 2002.
 
In summary, Prof. Edwards, has been an exemplary clinician, educator and researcher in the field of IVF technology and Infertility over the past 5 decades.
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