Welcome to Franco Laboratory



The Franco lab aims to understand the signaling mechanisms by which reactive oxygen species (ROS) regulate cellular fate. Distinct cell death pathways (apoptosis, necrosis and autophagy) have been associated to the etiology of human diseases such as cancer and neurodegeneration. ROS accumulation and oxidative stress have been implicated in the induction of cell death, but the molecular mechanisms that link ROS and the activation of cell death pathways remain elusive. We strive to identify those mechanisms and provide and insight into potential therapeutic approaches.

Rodrigo Franco

(Rodrigo Franco-Cruz)

Associate Professor
Dr. Rodrigo Franco
Dr. Rodrigo Franco

News & Events




  • Recent publication: Bohovych I, Fernandez MR, Rahn JJ, Stackley KD, Bestman JE, Anandhan A, Franco R, Claypool SM, Lewis RE, Chan SS, Khalimonchuk O. Metalloprotease OMA1 fine-tunes mitochondrial bioenergetic function and respiratory supercomplex stability. Sci Rep. (accepted)

  • Recent publication: Navarro-Yepes J, Annandurai A, Bradley E, Bohovych I, Yarabe B, de Jong A, Ovaa H, Zhou Y, Khalimonchuk O, Quintanilla-Vega B, Franco R. Inhibition of protein ubiquitination by paraquat and 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium impairs ubiquitin-dependent protein degradation pathways. Mol Neurobiol. (accepted)

  • Recent publication: Jia T, Anandhan A, Massilamany C, Rajaselaran R, Franco R, Reddy J. Evidence for an association of autophagy in the cell death mediated by dihydrotestosterone in autoreactive T cells independent of antigenic stimulation. J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. (accepted)

  • Dr. Franco was invited to participate as part of the Scientific Committee for the XIV International Congress of Toxicology (IUTOX) in Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico, from 2-6 of October, 2016. “Toxicology and Global sustainability”. He will chair the Symposium titled: Environmental exposures and Neurotoxicity: Molecular mechanisms, epidemiology and risk assessment.

  • Dr. Franco will chair the Minisymposium: Redox Signaling in Neurological Dysfunction at the 45th Annual Meeting of the Society for Neuroscience. October 17-21, 2015, Chicago, IL.

  • Dr. Franco will chair the Workshop: Mitochondria as a Central Target of Environmental Contaminants, Pharmaceutical Agents, and Toxicants: Mechanisms of Toxicity and Disease at the 55th Annual Meeting of the Society of Toxicology. March 22-26, 2016, San Diego, CA.

  • Dr. Franco is promoted to Associate Professor

  • Dr. Franco is featured in the Strategic Discussions for Nebraska (2015) (http://sdn.unl.edu/). Access directly at Magazine Article.