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José Gonçalves Franco Junior


José Gonçalves Franco Junior - Centro de Reprodução Humana Prof. Franco Junior, Ribeirão Preto

Graduated at the University of São Paulo, School of Medicine/Ribeirão Preto (1969), Master's at the University of São Paulo, School of Medicine/Ribeirão Preto (1973) and PhD degree by University of São Paulo Medical School Ribeirão Preto (1976). José Gonçalves Franco Junior completed a research fellowship in Assisted Reproduction at the University of California, Irvine, USA, from 1984 to 1985. Since 1988 he has been the Scientific Director of the Centre for Human Reproduction Prof. Franco Junior in Ribeirão Preto, Brazil.

He is the current president of Brazilian Society of Assisted Reproduction for the biennium 2014/2015. 

He was member of the Brazilian Medicine Federal Council, which has defined ethical rules for using assited reproduction techniques. 

He was one of the founders of the Assisted Reproduction Brazilian Society and the founder and editor of the JBRA Assisted Reproduction in 1997. 

He was also the Executive Director of REDLARA - Latin America Network of Assisted Reproduction. 2003 to 2006. 

He was President of the National Commission for Assisted Reproduction of the Brazilian Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics Associations (FEBRASGO). 

His special interests are ovarian stimulation and gamete selection. Among his published papers, 200 were published in Brazilian journals  and more than 100 in other languages. 

Project: Genetic biomarkers to predict pregnancy outcomes

During IVF/ICSI treatment, the principal objective is to offer for each patient the best treatment with the minimum side effects and low cost. The response to exogenous gonadotrophins used for multifollicular stimulation varies, leading to low-dose, non-effective treatment or overdose treatment with great risk of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS). Thus, there have been great efforts to personalize treatment to each patient. Today, there are some parameters (age, endocrine factors, antral follicles count) that are used to the prediction of ovary response but all of these markers have errors associated with their estimation. The prediction of ovary response using genetics biomarkers could detect poor and high responders being a tool to personalize the treatment, raising the chances of live birth. Some studies have associated certain gene polymorphisms with ovarian response to gonadotrophins in assisted reproduction. Based on this information we intend to use Next-Generation Sequencing as a new approach to determinate a genetic panel that would allow predicting ovarian response and provide a personalized treatment, reducing the side effects of fertility drugs and improving ongoing pregnancy rates.

In the same way, pregnancy outcomes prediction during IVF/ICSI treatment based on genetic biomarkers can encourage patients to repeat the cycles of ART since they are in a good pregnancy prognosis group. Moreover, the reduction of the number of transferred embryos could be another advantage to avoid complications of multiple pregnancies. Preliminary data provides evidence that certain gene polymorphisms have been associated with implantation failure and pregnancy loss after IVF/ICSI techniques. Based on this investigation and using Next-Generation Sequencing we will try to identify new genetics biomarkers for embryonic implantation.