(WASHINGTON) – Welcome to “This Week in Blood,” a weekly snapshot of the hottest studies from each week’s issue of Blood, the official journal of the American Society of Hematology (ASH), hand-picked by Blood Editor-in-Chief Bob Löwenberg, MD, and Deputy Editor Nancy Berliner, MD. If you would like a PDF copy of any of the manuscripts highlighted below or would like to request an interview with the author, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Recombinant HPA-1a antibody therapy for treatment of fetomaternal alloimmune thrombocytopenia: proof of principle in human volunteers, Ghevaert et al.
Inhibition of HPA-1a alloantibody-mediated platelet destruction by a deglycosylated anti-HPA-1a monoclonal antibody: towards targeted treatment of fetal-alloimmune thrombocytopenia, Bakchoul et al.
Fetomaternal alloimmune thrombocytopenia is usually caused by maternal alloantibodies against human platelet antigen 1a (HPA-1a). It can result in severe hemorrhagic complications in the fetus and tends to worsen with subsequent pregnancies. Two articles in this week’s issue of Blood offer hope for treatment of this disorder through the use of modified anti-HPA-1a monoclonal antibodies that block platelet destruction by binding to the antigen without engaging Fc-receptor functions. Alterations in the antibody do not impair transit across the placenta. Studies in mouse models and in normal volunteers suggest that the antibody could be effective in preventing this life-threatening complication, although determining the dose and timing of administration will require further extensive clinical investigation.
The microenvironment of AIDS-related diffuse large B-cell lymphoma provides insight into the pathophysiology and indicates possible therapeutic strategies, Liapis et al.
The role of the microenvironment in determining the prognosis of B-cell lymphomas has been increasingly recognized. Previous studies have characterized gene signatures for the microenvironment of HIV-negative diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) that predict prognosis. In this week’s issue of Blood, Liapis and colleagues characterize the tumor microenvironment in AIDS-related DLBCL (AR-DLBCL), reporting that the microenvironment of AR-DLBCL demonstrated higher angiogenic activity in association with a high level of Epstein-Barr Virus positivity as well as a higher prevalence of MYC gene translocations when compared to sporadic DLBCL cases. This discovery may open new avenues for exploring the use of inhibitors of angiogenesis as a clinical strategy for treating this poor-prognosis lymphoma.
Gene-centric association study of acute chest syndrome and painful crisis in sickle cell disease patients, Galarneau et al.
The clinical complications of sickle cell disease (SCD) are highly heterogeneous, and although some modifying features of clinical severity are well documented, most of the variation is unexplained. In this week’s issue of Blood, Galarneau and colleagues report on an investigation utilizing genome-wide association studies to interrogate possible genetic modifiers of disease phenotype in more than 1,500 patients with SCD. They identified a single-nucleotide polymorphism, COMMD7, which was correlated with acute chest syndrome. This gene is highly expressed in the lungs and interacts with NF-κB in regulating inflammatory responses. Such studies should contribute greatly to our understanding of the genetic variation in the SCD phenotype.
Blood (www.bloodjournal.org), the most cited peer-reviewed publication in the field of hematology, is available weekly in print and online. Blood is the official journal of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) (www.hematology.org), the world’s largest professional society concerned with the causes and treatment of blood disorders.
ASH’s mission is to further the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders affecting blood, bone marrow, and the immunologic, hemostatic, and vascular systems by promoting research, clinical care, education, training, and advocacy in hematology.
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