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Professor and Chair of the Chemistry Department Clint Spiegel has been awarded a third, three-year grant for $390,000 from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) to continue his group’s ongoing work on hemophilia A, a disorder that stops blood's ability to clot normally. Spiegel’s group has been focused on understanding the molecular basis of immune complications that arise due to therapeutic treatments for hemophilia as well as uncovering the mechanism of a rare autoimmune disease called acquired hemophilia.
Spiegel’s lab uses fundamental protein biochemistry and various structural biology techniques, such as X-ray crystallography, to uncover images in atomic detail of the proteins and antibodies involved in the blood clotting process as well as the pathogenic immune response due to treatment. Approximately 30% of severe hemophilia A patients receiving treatment develop an antibody response to the therapy, which can result in life-threatening complications.
This three-year grant from the NHLBI funds undergraduate and graduate students working directly on this project throughout the academic year and through the summer for each year of the award. With students as co-authors, Spiegel’s research has recently been published in the peer-reviewed journals Blood and the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. Based on this work, Spiegel was recently selected to give a “State of the Art” lecture at the International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostasis Congress in July 2021.