Associate Professor Mhoyra Fraser

PhD, MPhil, DipSci, BSc


A/Professor Mhoyra Fraser is a neuroendocrinologist interested in fetal brain development and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. She has contributed substantially to our understanding of fetal brain development and how this is disrupted when fetuses are deprived of oxygen or either exposed to infection or glucocorticoids.

Evidence suggests that the earlier a baby is born, the greater the risk the baby has of developing brain injury. Around half of the very preterm babies will have neurological and cognitive deficits that affect their daily life. The cause of this injury is unclear and there is no current treatment.

Hypoxia-ischaemia caused by a lack of oxygen to the brain or infection of the brain originating from the placenta and fetal membranes are major contributors to injury of the preterm brain.

A/Professor Fraser seeks to advance our understanding of the complex mechanisms, which link preterm brain injury to infection/inflammatory processes, and to develop novel therapeutic strategies such as non-invasive targeted exosomal or immunomodulatory therapies.

Affiliations and collaborations

Associate Professor, Department Physiology, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, University of Auckland

Research | Current

•Project 1: Non-invasive targeted exosomal therapies for preterm brain injury

•Project 2: Are exosomal microRNAs biomarkers for risk of cerebral palsy?

•Project 3: Immunomodulatory therapies for treatment of preterm brain injury

Teaching | Current

Senior lecturer, Dept Physiology, Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, University of Auckland

Areas of expertise

Preterm brain injury

Fetal and maternal exosomal based research

Cytokines and perinatal brain injury

Fetal neuroendocrine system

Biomarkers of perinatal brain injury


Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.


Contact details

Primary office location

M&HS BUILDING 503 - Bldg 503
Level 4, Room 401E
New Zealand

Web links