Researcher Delivers Key Thrombosis Lecture

The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Sriram Krishnaswamy, PhD, recently delivered this year’s Sol Sherry Distinguished Lecture in Thrombosis at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions annual conference. A thrombosis and hemostasis researcher, Dr. Krishnaswamy investigates the biochemical underpinnings of coagulation.

Held November 15 to 19 in Chicago, the American Heart Association (AHA) conference brought together approximately 17,000 attendees from over 100 countries. The AHA’s Sol Sherry Lecture honors the late Sol Sherry, MD, who was a pioneer in the field of thrombosis research and spent nearly twenty years at Temple University in Philadelphia. Past Sol Sherry lecturers include the University of Illinois’ James Morrissey, PhD, and the University of Maryland School of Medicine’s Dudley K. Strickland, PhD.

A Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Hematology, Dr. Krishnaswamy’s research is focused on better understanding “how protein-protein interactions involved in the assembly of the coagulation complexes on membranes modulate function and how the coagulation enzymes achieve narrow and defined specificity.” His lab is supported by a number of grants from the NIH, the most recent of which he received in August of 2014. That award supports his investigation of how platelets and vascular endothelium cells contribute to coagulation.

In addition, Dr. Krishnaswamy contributed to a recent Blood study authored by CHOP’s Lacramioara Ivanciu, PhD, and led by Rodney M. Camire, PhD.

In that study, the researchers examined the development of prothrombinase, the enzyme complex responsible for thrombin formation, which is itself an enzyme that plays a fundamental role in coagulation. They found, to their surprise, that platelets near the site of an injury “do not play the presumed preeminent role in supporting prothrombinase assembly and thrombin formation.” By shedding light on the location of prothrombinase formation, the study lays the ground for future research.

During his Sol Sherry Lecture, Dr. Krishnaswamy plans to discuss prothrombin and thrombin, following an article he wrote last year that was published in the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis. A review of the process by which thrombin is produced by prothrombinase, the article goes into the mechanics of this transition while noting recent developments in the field.

“In addition to its fundamental role in coagulation, prothrombin activation embodies key structural and functional features encountered in the other proteolytic activation steps of the cascade,” Dr. Krishnaswamy writes. “Consequently, the wealth of biochemical and biophysical information that has accumulated in this system justifies its consideration as an archetypal reaction of coagulation.”

“I’m honored to have been asked by the AHA to deliver this year’s Sol Sherry lecture,” Dr. Krishnaswamy said. “Dr. Sherry was a thrombosis pioneer, and it’s an honor to follow in his footsteps.”

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