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Department of Pathology


Professor Ashley Moffett has been awarded KI’s honorary doctorate for a lifetime of research and groundbreaking discoveries: “From NK cells to pre-eclampsia”. Hans-Gustaf Ljunggren hosted Ashley Moffett at one of the seminars at Karolinska Institutet. 


Ashley Moffett, Professor Emerita at the University of Cambridge, UK, was awarded KI’s honorary doctorate for a lifetime of research that has made groundbreaking discoveries concerning the biological mechanisms behind severe pregnancy-related conditions. These include pre-eclampsia, intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR), and unexplained fetal death, which together affect up to 10 per cent of all pregnancies.


Hans-Gustaf Ljunggren hosted Ashley Moffett at one of the seminars at Karolinska Institutet, where she gave a presentation entitled “From NK cells to pre-eclampsia: the role of the immune system in pregnancy.” 


Professor Moffett’s research has found that these diseases originate from critical interactions between natural killer (NK) cells in the decidua (the part of the uterus where the embryo implants itself) and the cells that form the placenta (trophoblasts), which derive from the fetus. 


Internationally, Professor Moffett has been recognized for her work in developing countries, such as Uganda, where she has helped establish and develop national programs for research, education, and information in maternal healthcare.


This article was initially published here.