Imperial College London


Faculty of MedicineDepartment of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction

Senior Lecturer in Reproductive Immunology







Chelsea and Westminster HospitalChelsea and Westminster Campus





I am a Senior Lecturer in Reproductive Immunology based in the Department of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction at Imperial College London.

I did my PhD at the University of Cambridge on NK cells in human pregnancy. I then went on to a post-doctoral project investigating the transcriptional control of NK cell development in mice, which I undertook at Imperial College London. In 2015, I was awarded a Sir Henry Dale Fellowship, which I used to start my own laboratory at the Royal Free Hospital Campus of UCL. Working closely with the liver transplant team, my group showed that long-lived resident NK cells are present in the human liver and defined some of that pathways by which they develop. We also showed that NK cells recruited to the liver become less functional in obesity-associated liver disease, and that this is associated with a decreased ability to clear cancer cells.

In 2019, I returned to Imperial, and to reproductive immunology. I took up a Borne-funded Lectureship in Reproductive Immunology in 2021 and was promoted to Senior Lecturer in 2022. My research group is interested in how innate immune cells in the human uterus, particularly ILCs, are involved in the physiological processes of pregnancy and how this may fail in disorders of pregnancy such as pre-eclampsia and pre-term birth. During the pandemic, I have also been involved in collating and communicating information on the effect of SARS-CoV2 infection and COVID vaccination on fertility, pregnancy and breastfeeding, and in research on how COVID vaccination affects the menstrual cycle.

I lecture on Immunology of Pregnancy, Immunology of Transplantation, Viral Immunity and SARS-CoV2 Immunology, act as a mentor to a Windsor Fellow and do outreach in local primary schools.

Students or post-docs interested in my group's work should email me at

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Male V, 2022, Menstruation and covid-19 vaccination., Bmj, Vol:376, ISSN:1759-2151, Pages:1-2

Male V, 2021, Menstrual changes after covid-19 vaccination, Bmj, Vol:374, ISSN:1759-2151, Pages:1-2

Male V, 2021, Are COVID-19 vaccines safe in pregnancy?, Nature Reviews Immunology, Vol:21, ISSN:1474-1733, Pages:200-201

Woon EV, Day A, Bracewell-Milnes T, et al., 2020, Immunotherapy to improve pregnancy outcome in women with abnormal natural killer cell levels/activity and recurrent miscarriage or implantation failure: A systematic review and meta-analysis., Journal of Reproductive Immunology, Vol:142, ISSN:0165-0378, Pages:1-12

Cuff AO, Perchet T, Dertschnig S, et al., 2020, Tbet promotes CXCR6 expression in immature NK cells and NK cell egress from the bone marrow, Immunology, Vol:161, ISSN:0019-2805, Pages:28-38

Monin L, Whettlock EM, Male V, 2020, Immune responses in the human female reproductive tract, Immunology, Vol:160, ISSN:0019-2805, Pages:106-115

Male V, Cuff AO, Silitto F, et al., 2019, The obese liver environment mediates conversion of NK cells to a less cytotoxic ILC1-like phenotype, Frontiers in Immunology, Vol:10, ISSN:1664-3224, Pages:1-15

Cuff AO, Robertson FP, Stegmann KA, et al., 2016, Eomeshi NK cells in human liver are long-lived and do not recirculate but can be replenished from the circulation, Journal of Immunology, Vol:197, ISSN:1550-6606, Pages:4283-4291

Male V, Nisoli I, Kostrzewski T, et al., 2014, The transcription factor E4bp4/Nfil3 controls commitment to the NK lineage and directly regulates Eomes and Id2 expression, Journal of Experimental Medicine, Vol:211, ISSN:1540-9538, Pages:635-642

Male V, Sharkey A, Masters L, et al., 2011, The effect of pregnancy on the uterine NK cell KIR repertoire, European Journal of Immunology, Vol:41, ISSN:0014-2980, Pages:3017-3027

Male V, Hughes T, McClory S, et al., 2010, Immature NK Cells, Capable of Producing IL-22, Are Present in Human Uterine Mucosa, Journal of Immunology, Vol:185, ISSN:0022-1767, Pages:3913-3918

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