Center for Reproductive Longevity and Equality

Exploring the critical relationship between reproductive function and aging.

While aging research is seeing unprecedented acceleration, how and why women undergo a decline in reproductive function with age is understudied. Thanks to a significant gift from Nicole Shanahan, the Buck has established the Center for Reproductive Longevity and Equality (CRLE). This is the first facility anywhere in the world focused solely on reproductive longevity and equality as it relates to aging and ending the threat of age-related disease.

Our goal is to conduct basic research to understand the mechanisms of female reproductive aging and develop strategies to prevent or delay ovarian aging. The end of fertility sets off a cascade of negative health effects in women’s bodies that impact bone, cognitive, cardiovascular and immune function. We want to understand why human women undergo a decline in fertility (menopause), why it varies between individuals, and why it correlates with life span. We think that understanding the limits on mammalian female reproductive capacity may provide important clues about aging in other tissues, as many hallmarks of aging are shared between somatic cells and oocytes. We collaborate with research groups around the world and promote open access data sharing.

  • Jennifer Garrison, PhD  Assistant Professor

    Garrison lab page

  • Francesca Duncan, PhD  Assistant Professor in Residence

    Duncan website

  • Polina Lishko, PhD  Adjunct Associate Professor

    Lishko website

  • Deena Emera, PhD  Senior Scientist and Writer in Residence

    Dr. Emera’s CV

  • Julia Balough  Reproductive Biology Hub Operations Leader
  • Kanako Ikami, PhD  Postdoctoral Research Fellow

    Kanako received her BA degree in pharmacy from Kyoto Pharmaceutical University in Japan 2008 and her Ph.D. from National Institute for Basic Biology in Japan in 2014. During her PhD . Kanako studied mechanism of spermatonial stem cell maintenance during mouse spermatogenesis. Kanako joined the Lei lab at the University of Michigan in 2015 and has been working on cell fate determination during oocyte formation. Kanako received several awards during her postdoc time, including the fellowships from Toyobo Biotechnology Foundation, The Uehara Memorial Foundation and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. During her free time, Kanako likes to play tennis and piano.

  • Mouse oocytes differentiate through organelle enrichment from sister cyst germ cells

    Lei Lei, PhD
    View article

  • Bipotent stem cells support the cyclical regeneration of endometrial epithelium of the murine uterus

    Shiying Jin, PhD
    View article

  • Ovulation and ovarian wound healing are impaired with advanced reproductive age

    Francesca Duncan, PhD
    View article

Cynthia Curtice
Administrative Coordinator
Phone: 415-209-2001

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