ASH 2021: Features Multiple MPNRF-Funded Projects 

  • MPNRF | January 4, 2022

    Thanks to a robust and growing MPN research community, the 63rd Annual Meeting and Exposition of the American Society of Hematology, ASH-21, was packed with illuminating MPN developments.

    Summarized here are a few of the exciting ASH 2021 presentations, workshops and posters by global researchers we’re proud to have funded. In addition, some of these sessions were hosted by prominent MPN investigators previously and/or currently funded by the foundation, including Ann Mullally, MD, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Angela Fleischman, MD, PhD, University of California, Irvine.

    Vijay Sankaran, MD, PhD, Boston Children’s Hospital, presented a scientific workshop and interactive Q&A on Insights from Rare Variant Association Studies of Myeloid Malignancies (MPNRF Challenge award 2019-2021). The work, which centers on genetic risk for MPN, offers insights from rare variant association studies of myeloid malignancies found in the UK Biobank.

    Jyoti Nangalia, MD, Wellcome Sanger Institute, and Vijay Sankaran, MD, PhD, Boston Children’s Hospital, were authors in a session called Inherited Blood Cancer Predisposition Through Altered Transcription Elongation. (MPN Challenge awards 2019-2021). The latest was presented on efforts to understand if MPNs are passed down through genetics within families and what factors may influence this. Dr. Nangalia was also a co-author for a Late Breaking Abstract presentation on The Longitudinal Dynamics and Natural History of Clonal Hematopoiesis.

    Stephen Oh, MD, PhD, Washington University, presented his work to date on DUSP6 in a scientific session DUSP6 Mediates Resistance to JAK2 Inhibition and Drives Myeloproliferative Neoplasm Disease Progression. These findings underscore the role of the gene DUSP6 in driving MPN disease progression and therapeutic resistance, and highlight the DUSP6-RSK1 axis as a novel drug pathway in myeloid malignancies. This work continues through a recent MPN Challenge award for 2021-2023.

    Joseph Scandura, MD, PhD, Weill Cornell Medicine, had his work on progression presented, specifically focusing on the discovery of a new biomarker he calls “cell fitness” which can be used to measure the extent to which treatments are mitigating the risk of progression and other adverse events. This investigation was funded as part of the MPNRF Interferon Initiative. Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cell Fitness As a Novel Prognostic and Monitoring Biomarker for JAK2V617F Myeloproliferative Neoplasms (MPNs) and MPNRF Interferon Initiative

    Joe Prchal, MD, University of Utah School of Medicine, was an author of a poster titled Iron Deficiency in Polycythemia Vera Increases HIF Activity and Transcription of Prothrombotic Genes. The poster suggests that repeated phlebotomies augment iron deficiency, which increases the level of hypoxia inducible factors (HIF) and prothrombotic genes which, in turn, has the potential to increase risk of thrombosis. The work is connected to MPNRF funding for a new 2021-2023 Challenge award.

    Linda Resar, MD, Johns Hopkins, had her research presented on HMGA1 Chromatin Regulators Drive Progression in Myeloproliferative Neoplasms through Epigenetic Rewiring to Induce Networks Involved in GATA2 and Proliferation. The study looks at these specific protein coding genes, believed to drive disease progression, and identifies HMGA1 as a possible target for therapy to stop it. An MPNRF 2020 Progression Research Network Pilot grant supported this work.