Published: 17-08-2023 12:46 | Updated: 31-08-2023 09:43

American Society of Hematology selects Amos Tuval to receive the Global Research Award

Amos Tuval
Amos Tuval outside Aula Medica on Campus Solna. Photo: N/A

Post-doctoral fellow Amos Tuval at the Department of Oncology-Pathology has been selected by the American Society of Hematology (ASH) to receive the 2023 ASH Global Research Award. Amos is one of 12 talented early-career investigators selected for this honor.

Through the ASH Global Research Award, ASH helps ease this difficult transition for researchers outside the United States and Canada by providing a partial salary or other support during that critical period, allowing recipients to pursue research projects that will help them get to the next step in their careers.

The 12 researchers selected for this year represent 10 countries: Argentina, China, Colombia, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, and Sweden.

Amos, who is also an Israeli hematologist, will receive research support for his project that focuses on finding new ways to prevent Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML).

As we age, blood-forming cells in the bone marrow gradually acquire mutations and some of them progress with time and become leukemic. Although it is possible to detect these mutated cells, most of them do not transform to leukemia and so, their malignant potential remains unclear. Amos’ project aims to characterize non-genomic molecular changes that are specific to mutated cells with a high malignant potential. These changes involve the misfolding and dysfunction of the protein p53.  p53 is a key protein and one of its main roles is to prevent cells from undergoing malignant transformation. Importantly, compounds that bind to the protein and restore its normal folding and function could potentially be used to prevent the transition from pre-leukemia to leukemia. One example of such compound is APR-246 that was identified and developed by Amos’ current supervisor at KI, Professor Klas Wiman. 

This project is performed in collaboration with Professor Mrinal Patnaik from the Mayo Clinic in the U.S. and was selected last year for the Cancer Research Award of the Mayo Clinic Cancer Center and the Cancer Research KI at Karolinska Institutet.

As part of the ASH Global Research Award, two mentors were assigned to Amos, Professor Eva Hellström-Lindberg from Karolinska Institutet and Associate Professor Naval Daver from the MD Anderson Cancer Center. Both supported the application and offered their help to promote this preventive approach during the project and after its completion.

"I am grateful for the opportunities that the ASH provides me with this award," says Amos Tuval. "Being selected for the ASH Global Research Award is not only a great honor but will also allow me to explore strategies for AML prevention in order to change the current AML treatment paradigm. The mentorship development program that this award offers enhances my supportive environment and will facilitate the future translation of findings of this research into clinical programs for AML screening and prevention."