Genetic analysis has revealed that mutations in a specific set of genes are recurrently associated with the development of MDS. The Goodell laboratory studies one of these genes that is known to be involved in modifying DNA. Even more frequently in MDS, mutations are found in genes that encode factors that control the manufacture of RNA (RNA splicing). The Goodell lab has evidence that the modification of DNA (by methylation), and the manufacture of RNA (by splicing) may be functionally intertwined in ways previously unappreciated. The Goodell and Westbrook labs have complementary expertise, and have proposed to work together to understand the link between these two mechanisms in MDS. Understanding how these mechanisms work together may unlock a greater understanding of how MDS develops, and lead to new concepts in therapeutic targeting of the aberrant processes.