Postnatal germ cells are controlled by FSH during ‘minipuberty’ at 3-6 months of age, and deranged by cryptorchidism to cause seminoma and infertility

Project Details

The Surgical Research Group works on a number of surgical problems affecting children, including:

  1. Normal and abnormal descent of the testis, with the aim of understanding the mechanism and providing possible non-surgical treatment - Project Leader: John Hutson
  2. Normal and abnormal postnatal germ cell development, which is believed to be the key to preventing infertility and testicular cancer in men with previous undescended testes in childhood - Project Leader : Ruili Li
  3. The causes of intractable chronic constipation, and the development of novel investigations and novel treatments, including electrical stimulation - Project Leader: Bridget Southwell
  4. The cause of duodenal atresia, using a new knockout mouse with downregulation of FGF10 - Project Leader: Warwick Teague
  5. Novel treatments for colorectal disorders such as anorectal anomalies and Hirschsprung disease - Project Leader: Sebastian King
  6. Using state-of-the-art manometry to understand surgical problems in the gut, such as oesophageal atresia and Hirschsprung disease - Project Leader: Sebastian King


  • Prof John Hutson - Chair of Paediatric Surgery/MCRI Hon Fellow
  • A/Prof Warwick Teague - General Surgeon/MCRI Fellow
  • Mr Sebastian King - General Surgeon/MCRI Fellow
  • Dr Bridget Southwell - Group Leader Surgical Research Group MCRI
  • Dr Ruili Li - Scientist, Surgical Research Group
  • Dr Jaya Vikramen - PhD student
  • Ms Julie Jordan-Ely, Master Student


  1. National Health & Medical Research Council
  2. Royal Children's Hospital Foundation
  3. Murdoch Children's Research Institute
  4. G-I Therapies

Research Outcomes

  1. Hutson JM, Southwell BR, Li R, Lie G, Ismail K, Harisis G, Chen C. The regulation of testicular descent and the effects of cryptorchidism.  Endocr Rev.  2013 23(5): 725-52. This summarises all our recent results into the hormonal regulation of testicular descent and cryptorchidism, and will enable all our work to be widely available, especially to endocrinologists.
  2. Hutson JM, Li R, Southwell BR, Petersen BL, Thorup J, Cortes. Germ cell development in the postnatal testis; the key to prevent malignancy in cryptorchidism.  Front Endocrinol (Lausanne) 2013 3: 176. This shows our recent work on postnatal germ cell development from our recent grant.
  3. Faure, A. Bouty, A. O'Brien, M. Thorup J, Hutson J, Heloury Y.  Testicular biopsy in prepubertal boys: a worthwhile minor surgical procedure?  Nat Rev Urol., (in press).  This review shows the increasing importance of testicular biopsy in understanding undescended testes.
  4. Thorup J, Kvist K, Clasen-Linde E, Hutson JM, Cortes D. Serum inhibin-B values in boys with unilateral vanished testis and in boys with unilateral cryptorchidism. J Urol. 2014 193(5): 1632-6. Increase of the serum inhibin-B was found to be explained by the contralateral testicular hyperplasia in unilateral vanished testis.  This paper shows that CIA and CID have been collaborating for some years and are leading experts in cryptorchidism.  
  5. Cunha GR, Sinclair A, Risbridger G, Hutson JM, Baskin LS.  Current understanding of hypospadias relevance of animal models.  Nature Reviews Urology 2015 12(5): 271-80.  This paper presents the evidence for essential role of oestrogen in distal urethral development and hypospadias.

Research Group

Surgical Research Group

Faculty Research Themes

Child Health

School Research Themes

Child Health in Medicine, Cancer in Medicine

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre


MDHS Research library
Explore by researcher, school, project or topic.