Professional background

Dr Mary Petrou in consultant clinical molecular geneticist at UCLH and honorary senior lecturer at UCL. She is head of the haemoglobinopathy genetics service at UCLH.

Mary did her doctorate at UCL and specialised in haemoglobinopathy genetics at UCL/UCLH. Currently a member of the NHS Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia screening programme subgroup and committee member of the UK Forum for Haemoglobin Disorders which both drive forward policy in prevention and treatment of haemoglobin disorders.

Her key interests are in the prevention of haemoglobinopathies, preimplantation genetic diagnosis - UCLH was the first UK centre to develop PGD for sickle cell and thalassaemia and the first to have a baby born following PGD - and development of haemoglobinopathy prevention services at the global level. She is often called upon to advise on the development of these services in other countries, clinical and applied bioinformatics and is part of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Community Control of Hereditary Disorders working on the 'Accessible Publishing of Genetic Information' - APoG1system - a prototype tool for supporting practitioners and patients in informed choice. She is an advisor to the United Kingdom Thalassaemia Society, The Sickle Cell Society and the Thalassaemia International Federation.

Dr Petrou sees haemoglobinopathy genetics patients every Tuesday and Thursday. Urgent referrals can be accommodated at other times by arrangement in the Fetal Medicine Unit at the EGA; the clinic code is MP30. Referrals must be emailed to

Research interests

  • Prevention of haemoglobinopathies - screening, genetic counselling, prenatal diagnosis
  • Molecular genetics
  • Preimplantation genetic diagnosis
  • Development of haemoglobinopathy services at the global level


Languages spoken



Hannah Blencowe, Sowmiya,Moorthie, Mary Petrou, Hanan Hamamy, Sue Povey, Alan Bittles, Stephen Gibbons, Matthew Darlison,, Bernadette Modell. Congenital Disorders Expert Group. Rare single gene disorders: estimating baseline prevalence and outcomes worldwide. J of Medical Genetics, 2018 Oct; 9(4): 397-406

Anthony Cutts*, Dimitrios V. Vavoulis1,*, Mary Petrou, Frances Smith, Barnaby Clark, Shirley Henderson, Anna Schuh A method for non-invasive prenatal diagnosis of monogenic autosomal recessive disorders. * (joint first authors) Blood 2019, Oct 3; 134 (14): 1190-1193

Mohammad Sorowar Hossain, Md. Mahbub Hasan, Enayetur Raheem, Abdullah Al Mosabbir, Muhammad Sougatul Islam,  Abdullah Al Mosabbir, Mary Petrou,  Paul Telfer, Mahbubul H. Siddiqee  "Lack of knowledge and misperceptions about thalassemia among college students in Bangladesh: A cross-sectional baseline study. Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases 2020, 15, Article No:54, 

Angastiniotis M, Petrou M, Loukopoulos D, Modell B, D. Farmakis, Englezos P, Eleftheriou A. The prevention of thalassaemia revisited by Thalassaemia International Federation (TIF): a historical and ethical perspective. Submitted to Haemoglobin October 2020