Monique Chavez

Program: Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Current advisor: Matthew J. Walter, MD

Undergraduate university: University of California-Davis

Research summary
We will functionally evaluate mutation combinations that contribute to subclone

Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) is the most common adult myeloid blood malignancy with a median age of diagnosis of 70-71. In addition to the negative impact of anemias on patients’ quality of life, approximately 30% of patients will develop a secondary acute myeloid leukemia (sAML). Based on the World Health’s Organization diagnostic criteria, MDS diagnosis includes persistent peripheral cytopenias, morphologic dysplasia of
hematopoietic cells, and a bone marrow blast count of less than 20%. Even with current advances in sequencing technologies, the mechanisms driving abnormal hematopoietic cell differentiation, maturation arrest and clonal expansion are not fully understood. We want to better understand mechanisms that will be essential to optimize a patient-centered treatment approach for MDS patients.

Graduate publications
Kim SP, Srivatsan SN, Chavez M, Shirai CL, White BS, Ahmed T, Alberti MO, Shao J, Nunley R, White LS, Bednarski J, Pehrson JR, Walter MJ. 2021 Mutant U2AF1-induced alternative splicing of H2afy (macroH2A1) regulates B-lymphopoiesis in mice. Cell Rep, 36(9):109626.

Tian L, Chavez M, Chang GS, Helton NM, Katerndahl CDS, Miller CA, Wartman LD. 2021 Kdm6a deficiency restricted to mouse hematopoietic cells causes an age- and sex-dependent myelodysplastic syndrome-like phenotype. PLoS ONE, 16(11):e0255706.


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