Reproductive Biology Hub

Supporting cross-disciplinary collaborations to advance our understanding of the mechanisms underlying reproductive aging.

Understanding the mechanisms underlying reproductive aging

The Reproductive Biology Hub is embedded in the Center for Reproductive Longevity and Equality (CRLE) at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging. The mission of the​ Hub is to enable, support, and promote cross-disciplinary collaborations between the fields of reproductive science and aging to advance our understanding of the mechanisms underlying female reproductive aging.

The Hub collaborates with interested researchers to provide project design consultation, experimental support and execution, data analysis, and training as relevant. The Hub has expertise to support studies involving gamete, gonad, early embryo, and reproductive tract biology across mammalian model systems. 

  • Bikem Soygur Kaya, PhD . Director

    Dr. Soygur Kaya earned her BS in biology from Eskisehir Osmangazi University (2009) and MSc in reproductive biology from Akdeniz University (2013), Turkey. Early in her career, she worked in the lab of Dr. Harry Moore at the University of Sheffield, Centre for Stem Cell Biology UK (2013) on human embryonic stem cells and endogenous retroviruses. She started her PhD in Histology and Embryology at Akdeniz University School of Medicine, before joining the lab of Dr. Diana Laird at University of California, San Francisco where she conducted her thesis project. Her graduate studies focused on the role of germ cell interconnectedness in fetal oocyte differentiation using state of the art mouse genetics and imaging technologies. After receiving her PhD in 2018, she continued as a postdoctoral researcher at UCSF, where she studied how the early events of oocyte development can ultimately affect oocyte fate during adulthood and aging. In 2023, she was appointed as the director of the Reproductive Biology Hub where she has devoted her ongoing scientific efforts to demystifying the enigma of female reproductive aging.

  • Giuliana Zaza . Research Associate

    Giuliana graduated in 2022 from The Ohio State University with a B.S in neuroscience with research distinction and a minor in global public health. During her time as an undergraduate Giuliana worked in a developmental neuropathology lab where she studied the development of breathing disorders originating in the central nervous system. She also completed an undergraduate thesis investigating the effects of TLR-ligands on various newborn behaviors. She will be assisting in reproductive aging research as part of the Duncan Lab and collaborating with other labs at the Buck as part of the Reproductive Biology Hub. Giuliana's future plans include attending graduate school to continue her education in reproductive biology.

The Reproductive Biology Hub is made possible by a grant from the Bia-Echo Foundation and in cooperation with the Global Consortium for Reproductive Longevity and Equality.

The Hub provides expertise, services, training, and facilities in:

  • Project design consultation
  • Reproductive tissue collection for morphological, quantitative and molecular analyses
  • Gamete collection for in vitro maturation and fertilization assays
  • Breeding and mating performance evaluation
  • Reproductive endocrine function intervention and assessment
  • Data analysis, and training as relevant

The Hub welcomes internal and external collaborations.

The Hub charges researchers at an hourly rate for staff service or equipment usage.

External collaborations will be evaluated on a per-project basis.

For further information or to schedule a consultation, please contact Bikem Soygur Kaya, PhD at


  • Breeding/Fertility Trial
  • Ovarian Reserve Analysis
  • Estrous Cyclicity Analysis
  • Gamete and gonad collection
  • Reproductive cell culture (follicle, oocyte, egg, embryo)
  • In-vitro maturation and fertilization
  • Semen Analysis
  • Micromanipulation and microinjection
  • Histological and morphological tissue analysis


  • Wide-stage Dissection Microscopes: Leica M165 on TL5000 Base with Heated stage and Camera
  • Box Incubators: Thermo Scientific Heracell VIOS 160i Tri-Gas CO2 Incubator, 100% Copper
  • EVOS Cell Imaging System for live cell, whole-mount, or tissue section imaging
  • CFX384 Touch Real-Time PCR Detection System
  • Azure600 Western Blot Imaging System

Please contact us for collaboration, technology or consultation inquiries.

Bikem Soygur Kaya, PhD


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