Berna Sözen

Berna Sozen, Ph.D. is Research Associate at the University of Cambridge, Department of Physiology, Development and Neuroscience. Dr. Sozen received her Bachelor of Science degree in 2009 from Akdeniz University, in the Department of Biology, Turkey. She obtained a Master of Science (MS.c.) in Reproductive Biology at the Histology-Embryology Department, School of Medicine in Akdeniz University in 2013. During her MS.c., she received a European Research Fellowship to complete her training at the University of Southampton, where she worked with Prof. Tom P. Fleming who was recently awarded the Marshall Medal for pioneering embryo research in the UK.


Dr. Sozen completed Clinical Embryologist training in 2015 at Cerrahpasa Medical School, IVF unit, Turkey. She was then awarded with an International Research Fellowship from TUBITAK in 2015 and undertook her PhD research at the University of Cambridge in the laboratory of Prof. Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz. She completed her PhD in 2018 in Histology-Embryology and Stem Cell Biology at Akdeniz University in collaboration with the University of Cambridge.


As a developmental scientist, her primary interest is in better understanding of mammalian embryo development. Dr. Sozen and colleagues, under the supervision of Prof. Zernicka-Goetz, recently succeeded in constructing embryo-like structures solely from stem cells in vitro, generating an artificial platform to recapitulate the natural architecture and gene signature of the mammalian embryo, without the requirement of maternal tissues. Their discovery of ‘artificial embryos’ became widely recognised. This model brings outstanding potential for understanding development, insight of a great value to the IVF clinics and for regenerative medicine.


Dr. Sozen has, so far, 17 published research articles in different scientific journals including Science and Nature. She has delivered several invited lectures, received scientific conference awards and research fellowships both nationally and internationally.