Mary E. Norton


Perinatologist and medical geneticist
Division Director of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
Avid hiker with my dog, Juno

Mary E. Norton is a perinatologist and clinical geneticist at UCSF Medical Center's Prenatal Diagnostic Center. She primarily cares for pregnant women who have a fetus with a birth defect or genetic disorder or are at risk for such a condition. Norton performs obstetrical ultrasounds, counsels women in whom ultrasound detects a problem with the fetus and performs such prenatal tests as amniocentesis and chorionic villus sampling. She also interprets complex genetic tests, especially when abnormalities are found. Her areas of interest in research include applying new genetic tests to prenatal diagnosis and fetal disease, as well as patient decision-making around genetic testing and obstetrical ultrasound. She is also the chair of the obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at UCSF.

Norton earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Washington in 1982. She completed her internship and residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Tuft University in Boston in 1990. She completed a fellowship in Maternal Fetal Medicine and Clinical Genetics at UCSF in 1993. After several years at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, she returned to San Francisco where she joined UCSF Medical Center in 1998. She is a professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at UCSF.

  • Education

    University of Washington School of Medicine, 1986

  • Residencies

    Tufts-New England Medical Center, OB/GYN, 1987

  • Fellowships

    Tufts-New England Medical Center, OB/GYN, 1990

    UCSF Medical Center, Genetics/Maternal Fetal Medicine, 1993

  • Board Certifications

    Obstetrics and Gynecology, American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology

  • Academic Title


I help pregnant women and their families understand challenges with their pregnancy or genetic history to support them making their own best choices.

Clinics I work with

Fetal Treatment Center

Betty Irene Moore Women's Hospital

1855 Fourth St., Second Floor, Room A-2432
San Francisco, CA 94158

Prenatal Diagnostic Center

1825 Fourth St., Third Floor
San Francisco, CA 94158

Decorative Caduceus

Hydrops: Diagnosing & Redefining Outcomes With Precision Study

Both NIHF and birth defects can be caused by a variety of genetic variants that researchers are continuing to learn more about. Exome sequencing will yield information about the specific genetic variants present in cases of NIHF a...


Decorative Caduceus

A Study to Evaluate the Safety, Efficacy, Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics of M281 Adminis...


Decorative Caduceus

Chronic Hypertension and Pregnancy (CHAP) Project

One of more severe outcomes including fetal or neonatal death up to 2 weeks; preeclampsia with severe features (Severe hypertension and proteinuria or hypertension and severe features per ACOG); placental abruption; or indicated P...


Decorative Caduceus

Clinical Utility of Pediatric Whole Exome Sequencing

Our outcome will be an assessment of clinical utility in patients that receive a positive (pathogenic or likely pathogenic) result. Clinical utility will be measured with a quantitative score based on changes in medical care, such...


Decorative Caduceus

Clinical Utility of Prenatal Whole Exome Sequencing

CU covers: a) Pregnancy termination; b) In-utero medical or surgical intervention; c) Perinatal decision making- including antepartum surveillance for fetal distress; location and mode of delivery; decisions for non-intervention o...


My work

Watch Dr. Norton's story
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The quandary of genetic testing when you're pregnant

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UCSF Center for Maternal-Fetal Precision Medicine