Marilyn Renfree

Marilyn is a Founder member of the Society whose research has focussed almost entirely on marsupials because of their intrinsic interest and for the opportunities they provide as biomedical models for understanding mammalian reproduction and development.  Her discoveries have also satisfied her special interests in the Australian mammalian fauna, particularly marsupials and monotremes, and her desire to understand the evolution of reproduction.  Marilyn has mentored and supervised 54 PhD; 6 Masters, 56 Honours students and 19 postdoctoral researchers.  She has established and continues to manage the largest marsupial breeding colony in the world.  She has served on the editorial boards of 7 journals, and contributed to scientific advisory boards and committees including the Centre for Trophoblast Research (Cambridge, UK), the Centre for Genomics and Reproduction (Dunedin, NZ), the Prime Ministers Science Prizes Committee, has chaired the Australian Antarctic Division Ethics Committee and the NHMRC Guide to the Use of Australian Native Mammals in Biomedical Research.  Marilyn was Chair of the SRB form 1997-2000, and she continues to be an active participant in annual meetings.  As Secretary of Biological Sciences and Vice President of the Academy of Science, she instigated the creation of several new biological sciences National Committees including the new Cell and Developmental Biology NC which includes as a member a representative of the SRB.  Her research is regularly presented at international congresses and she has engaged in many national and international science press, radio and television interviews and programs.  Marilyn’s underlying philosophy is that the discipline of reproductive biology has ever more to offer our understanding of human reproduction and development: after all, reproduction is the science of the transmission of life!