Juan Antonio García-Velasco and Elisa Varela, both doctors at IVI Madrid, have been awarded the Forward Scholarship, dedicated to research and innovation in Assisted Reproduction

They have been awarded a grant that will allow the two researchers to study the rejuvenation of telomerase in the ovary.

Based on the concept and research of Prof. María Blasco (CNIO - National Center for Oncological Research), both García-Velasco and Varela intend to study telomeres and their impact in female fertility. The shortening of the telomeres (extreme part of the chromosomes) is related to aging. The aim of the study, which will be undertaken by Prof. García-Velasco and Dr. Varela, is to lengthen the telomeres, to rejuvenate them and rejuvenate the ovary, to enable the possibility of conception even in late maternity and in women with precocious aging.

According to Prof. García-Velasco "one of the main concerns of IVI lies in finding new ideas and new research to continue evolving in the field of Reproductive Medicine. We can see that infertility increases progressively, partly due to the change in social models, where motherhood is generally increasingly delayed.  We are very excited about this new project, if we can understand how the ovaries and their oocytes age, we will be able to reverse the damage they suffer over time and improve results in older mothers. "

Comments Dr. Varela; "the main focus of IVI is our patients. All our research, development projects and advances are oriented to improve every day and achieve higher success rates to help our patients. We firmly believe that studying telomerase in the ovary can yield encouraging results and we are enormously excited about this project. "

The Forward (Gedeon Richter) Scholarship project, announced in July during the most important European Assisted Reproduction Conference, will allow Prof. García-Velasco and Dr. Varela to embark on five years of research. This scholarship, which is awarded every two years, aims to promote the most original and innovative projects related to Assisted Reproduction. For this 2018 scholarship, 65 researchers from 16 European countries were reviewed producing a final six winners including the IVI doctors, Juan Antonio García-Velasco and Elisa Varela.