Monique Chavez

MSTP in PhD Training

Program: Molecular Genetics and Genomics

Current advisor: Matthew J. Walter, MD

Undergraduate university: University of California-Davis, 2014

Enrollment year: 2016

Research summary
Understanding clonal diversity in myeloid malignancies.

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
Barnell EK, Skidmore ZL, Newcomer KF, Chavez M, Campbell KM, Cotto KC, Spies NC, Ruzinova MB, Wang T, Abro B, Kreisel F, Parikh BA, Duncavage EJ, Frater JL, Lee YS, Hassan A, King JA, Kohnen DR, Fiala MA, Welch JS, Uy GL, Vij K, Vij R, Griffith M, Griffith OL, Wartman LD. 2023 Distinct clonal identities of B-ALLs arising after lenolidomide therapy for multiple myeloma. Blood Adv, 7(2):236-45. PMCID: PMC9860439

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. PMCID: PMC8454217

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. PMCID: PMC8592440