Artificial insemination is one of the most important tools available for animal breeding but success is dependent on sperm quality, among other factors. Improving sperm quality for artificial insemination has been an overarching theme of Prof. Morrell´s work. Her PhD project involved developing a method for sexing mammalian spermatozoa by identification of X- or Y-chromosomes, which was later patented by other researchers and is the basis of the current commercial method. As a post-doc, she worked with various aspects of andrology in a range of species, including alpacas and pandas, before focussing on sperm selection to improve sperm quality since arriving at SLU. She has 7 patents for a method for selecting robust spermatozoa from a semen sample. She has published widely, with >350 peer-reviewed publications and several thoughsan citations (h-index 31, i-10 index 120).
Teaching reproduction to veterinary students in 4th and 5th years. and on the Masters course in Biology of the Horse. Course leader for free-standing course One-Health: Humans, Animals and Ecosystems
Course leader for PhD student courses through GS-VMAS in: Sperm Quality Evaluation (2018); How to write your first grant application (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022); Questionnaire design and management (2019 ans 2022), Camelid Reproduction (2019), as well as a NOVA course: Sperm Quality Evaluation (2022).
Various projects for Masters students
Current projects: as PI
Alternatives to antibiotics in semen extenders for artificial insemination (FORMAS - PhD student project (2018-2022).
Antimicrobial resistance in horses in conjunction with assisted reproduction (Mahasarakham University - PhD student project 2019-2023)
Effect of antibiotics in semen extenders on the development of antimicrobial resistance in the microflora of mares (Svensk Veterinärförbund/Agria:, 2020)
Antibiotics in semen extenders (Gustafsson & Whitmore, 2021)
Reducing antimicrobial resistance in pig artificial insemination (Carl Tryggers Foundation, 2021)
With León university - Improving the efficiency of the pig industry by applying advanced sperm selection techniques and analysis of sperm chromatin (2019-2022)
with Lima university -Fertility indicators in cryopreserved alpaca sperm (2021-2023)
with Malmö university - PROSPEKT 21
with Inland Norway University - ZYGOTE
with Oblique(stakeholder collaboration)
Previous research has focussed on improving sperm quality for artificial insemination in various species, involving grants from SLF, SSH (several), Jordbruksverket , FORMAS, VR. In addition, she has collaborated on projects to investigate the microbiome of the equine placenta, to detemine the age at which semen can be utilised from young bulls, and an industry-funded project on sexing sperm.
She has had many national and international collaborations. For current collaborations, please see the Research section.
Various international collaborations, ranging from informal collaborations to formal grant applications, with scientists in Spain (University of Caceres, University of Cordoba, Univesrity of León, Topigs-Norsvin), Portugal (University of Porto), Germany (Minitube International; University of Hannover; National Stud at Celle), Estonia (Estonian University of Life Sceinces), Norway (Inland Norway University of applied Sciences), USA (Gluck Research Institute, Kentucky), Peru (san Marcos University, Lima), Brazil (Minitube of Brazil), Argentina (University of Buenos Aires), Hungary, France (IMV Technologies), UK (University of Anerystwyth), The Netherlands (CMV), Finland (University of Helsinki), China (Giant Panda Research Center, Cheng Du), India (Indian Council of Agricultural Research), Africa (Mpala Research Station) Belgium (University of Ghent), United Arab Emirates (Camel Reproduction Center).
1977-1980 BSc(Hons) Animal Science, University of London
1980-1984 BVetMed Royal Veterinary College, London
1989-1992 Specialisation Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons
1997-2000 Diploma Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons
2000-2003 Masters in Business Adminstration
2012 Associate professorship (docent)
2021 ongoing Guest Professor at Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Norway
2012 ongoing Faculty Professor in Veterinary Reproductive Biotechnologies, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
2007-2012 Senior researcher, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
2005-2007 Communications, Voice Professional, Sweden
1999-2004 Research & Development Manager, Nidacon International, Sweden
1995-1997 Head of Animal Services, EMBL, Germany
1992-1995 Post-doctoral scientist, German Primate Center
1991-1992 Head of Animal facility, Merck Sharp and Dohme, UK
1989-1991 Post-doctoral scientist, MRC Collaborative Center, UK
1987-1989 Post-doctoral scientist, NIMR, UK
1984-1987 PhD student, NIMR, UK
Invited speaker/keynote speaker at conferences:
2021: 4th International Caparica Conference in Antibiotic Resistance, Caparica, Portugal.
2019: International Conference on Boar Semen Preservation; Hunter Valley, Australia.
2018: Workshop European Society for Domestic Animal Reproduction annual meeting; Cordoba, Spain.
2017: Annual meeting of Brazilian Society for Embryo Technologies; Recife, Brazil.
2016: Annual meeting of European Association for Embryo Technologies (AETE); Barcelona, Spain.
2016: Regional Conference for Animal Genetic Resources Conservation, Oman.
2015: IMV Reproduction Conference, Deauville, France.
2014: Portugese Veterinary Congress; Lisbon, Portugal.
2013: ICPR, Poland; abstract chosen for oral presentation
2012: International Symposium on Stallion Reproduction; Vienna, Austria
2011: International Conference on Boar Semen Preservation; Bonn, Germany.
Popular science communications e.g. at meetings at the request of grant awarding bodies SSH and SLF, from the dairy advisory organisation Växa Sverige and from Viking Genetics.
Positions in professional associations / networks
2017 - Board member of European Association of Embryo Technologies (including helping to organise annual meetings)
2019 - Associate editor Acta vet. Scand.
2020 - Associate editor MDPI Animals.
2022 -Guest Editor Special Edition Frontiers in Veterinary Science
2013-2019: Member of committee for assignment of stipendia at SLU;
2016-2022: Member of committee on doctoral education at SLU
Supervision of >20 PhD students, 6 as main supervisor.
Thanapol Nongbua (2017) The role of seminal plasma in bull fertility. PhD.
Ziyad Al-Kass (2019) Characterization, quantification and removal of potential pathogens from stallion semen. PhD.
Essraa Al-Essawe (2019) Equine seminal plasma: its role in protecting stallion spermatozoa during cryopreservation. PhD.
Dinah Seligsohn (2021) Pure white gold
Pongpreecha Malauang (on-going)
Aleksandar Cojkic (on-going)
Athanasios Georgakas (2015) Effect of homologous and heterologous seminal plasma on stallion spermatozoa MSc (Equine Science)
Maria Celina Abraham (2016) Reproductive Biotechnologies in Swedish Male Alpacas. MPhil.
Supervision of >40 Masters Students (veterinary and animal sciences)