Our Founder

“As an experienced obstetrician, I can manage most complications that pregnancy can throw at me, with one exception, when a woman presents in preterm labour. When that happens, I know that there is virtually nothing that I can do to delay the inevitable delivery.

And always at the back of my mind I know that delivering early is the most important cause of childhood disability and death, more important than infection, trauma or cancer.

Only by investing in research will we understand what causes preterm labour. Only by investing in research will we stop preterm delivery.”

Professor Mark Johnson, Founder and Chief Scientific Officer.


Professor Mark Johnson is the Clinical Chair in Obstetrics at Imperial College. He is also a Consultant Obstetrician at the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital focusing on high risk maternity care. 

Mark began his research early in his career. His PhD, supported by The William’s Fellowship from the University of London, defined the role of relaxin in human pregnancy and was awarded in 1995.

Clinically, Mark initially trained in general medicine, endocrinology and diabetes, specialising in reproductive endocrinology. He set up the highly successful IVF unit in Chelsea and Westminster Hospital. He later trained in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, becoming the only dually accredited Consultant in General Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynaecology in the UK, following which he became the Professor in Clinical Obstetrics at Imperial College in 2010.

As a physician and obstetrician, Mark saw the devastating effects of prematurity first hand, and was left feeling deeply frustrated by his inability to do more for his patients. With his dual expertise in obstetrics and research, Mark found himself in a unique position to tackle the problem of preterm birth and set up Borne in 2012.


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