Date: Thursday 22nd July 2021
Time: 17:00 - 18:00
Virtual via Zoom - Register here to receive link
Prof George Vassiliou, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and University of Cambridge:
Clonal Haematopoiesis and Blood Cancer Prevention
Clonal haematopoiesis (CH), the disproportionate expansion of a blood stem cell and its progeny driven by leukaemia-associated somatic mutations, is a common phenomenon that increases in prevalence with age, affecting the majority of people aged 70 years or older. CH remains subclinical in the majority of cases, but in some instances (~1-2%) it evolves to a haematological cancer, usually a myeloid malignancy such as acute myeloid leukaemia, myelodysplastic syndrome or myeloproliferative neoplasm. Certain characteristics of CH can help identify at risk individuals, but our ability to confidently identify those that will go on to develop a haematological cancer remains limited. Hopes for future leukaemia prevention programmes rely on improved prognostication and the development of therapeutic interventions that can stall or avert leukaemic progression. Our work over the last few years has focused on improving our understanding of the causes, consequences, natural history and therapeutic vulnerabilities of CH, in order to help make leukaemia prevention a plausible clinical goal.
Prof George Vassiliou is a CRUK Senior Clinical Fellow and a member of Faculty at the Wellcome Sanger and Wellcome-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institutes. His research group is studying the pre-clinical evolution, pathogenesis and treatment of haematological malignancies with a particular focus on acute myeloid leukaemia (AML). Prof Vassiliou is also a Consultant Haematologist at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge treating patients with haematological cancers.
Please note due to the presentation of unpublished research findings this seminar will not be recorded.
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