Robert Edwards, the British scientist awarded a Nobel prize for his pioneering work in developing in vitro fertilisation (IVF), died on Monday aged 87, his university announced.

"It is with deep sadness that the family announces that Professor Sir Robert Edwards, Nobel prizewinner, scientist and co-pioneer of IVF, passed away peacefully in his sleep on 10th April 2013 after a long illness," the University of Cambridge said in a statement.