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Professor Allan Herbison

PositionHonorary Professor
DepartmentDepartment of Physiology
QualificationsBMedSc MB CHB(Otago) PhD(Camb)
Research summaryNeural control of fertility


Studies in the laboratory focus on understanding how the brain controls fertility.

This includes elucidating the molecular and cellular mechanisms through which neural circuits generate the pulsatile release of reproductive hormones in the blood stream as well as the surge of luteinizing hormone that triggers ovulation.

The aim of this work is to provide better treatment options for individuals with problems associated with the process of puberty, and fertility as an adult.


Clarkson, J., Han, S. Y., Piet, R., McLennan, T., Kane, G. M., Ng, J., Porteous, R. W., Kim, J. S., … Iremonger, K. J., & Herbison, A. E. (2017). Definition of the hypothalamic GnRH pulse generator in mice. PNAS, 114(47), E10216-E10223. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1713897114

Herbison, A. E. (2016). Control of puberty onset and fertility by gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons. Nature Reviews Endocrinology, 12, 452-466. doi: 10.1038/nrendo.2016.70

Han, S. Y., McLennan, T., Czieselsky, K., & Herbison, A. E. (2015). Selective optogenetic activation of arcuate kisspeptin neurons generates pulsatile luteinizing hormone secretion. PNAS, 112(42), 13109-13114. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1512243112

Campos, P., & Herbison, A. E. (2014). Optogenetic activation of GnRH neurons reveals minimal requirements for pulsatile luteinizing hormone secretion. PNAS, 111(51), 18387-18392. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1415226112

Kirilov, M., Clarkson, J., Liu, X., Roa, J., Campos, P., Porteous, R., … Herbison, A. E. (2013). Dependence of fertility on kisspeptin—Gpr54 signalling at the GnRH neuron. Nature Communications, 4, 2492. doi: 10.1038/ncomms3492