Boris Reizis, Ph.D.
2020 Funding recipient
The role and mechanism of microenvironment-driven hematopoietic abnormalities in MDS
Discovery Research Grant 2020
Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are a group of diseases affecting the formation of blood, leading to reduced blood clotting, low red blood cell numbers, and increased risk of blood cancer (leukemia). These abnormalities are often caused by defects in the blood stem cells that normally reside in the bone marrow and sustain blood formation. In addition, many MDS patients show abnormalities in the bone marrow cavity such as the accumulation of connective tissue fibers that dislodge blood cells. It is currently unknown whether or how these abnormalities of bone tissue synergize with blood stem cell defects to facilitate MDS development. Using novel animal models, we will analyze how aberrant activity of bone marrow resident cells affects the normal function of blood stem cells and promotes defective blood formation in MDS. If successful, the proposed studies would elucidate a previously underappreciated mechanism of MDS development, and pave the way towards new treatment strategies.