Kellie Machlus

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Kellie Machlus, PhD is Assistant Professor at Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She obtained her PhD at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill under the supervision of Dr. Alisa Wolberg, studying the pathophysiology of venous thromboembolism. She then did her postdoctoral fellowship with Dr. Joseph Italiano at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, studying megakaryocyte biology. Dr. Machlus is now a Principal Investigator in the Vascular Biology Program at Boston Children’s Hospital, where her lab is focused on identifying molecular mechanisms of megakaryocyte development that lead to enhanced platelet production, with specific emphasis on how inflammation affects megakaryocyte function. In many inflammatory conditions, platelet counts rise acutely, resulting in thrombocytosis; what initiates this platelet up-regulation is not well understood. The Machlus lab uses inflammation as a model of exacerbated, TPO-independent hematopoiesis that results in differences in platelet quality and quantity in order to 1) gain a better understanding of the basic biology of megakaryocyte maturation and platelet production, 2) identify TPO independent pathways of megakaryocyte maturation, and 3) determine ways to reduce platelet-related morbidity and mortality in inflammation. The long-term goal of the lab is to identify TPO-independent pathways of megakaryocyte maturation that result in novel therapeutics to treat platelet disorders. Current lab projects are focused on using the chemokine CCL5 and platelet extracellular vesicles to enhance megakaryopoiesis and platelet production, studying the role of megakaryocytes in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases such as lupus, and elucidating how lipids regulate megakaryocyte maturation and platelet production. Dr. Machlus is also a member of the Scientific Advisory Board of STRM.BIO.