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Amos Espinosa Wins American Society of Hematology Minority Hematology Graduate Award

May 08, 2024

Amos S. Espinosa, a PhD Candidate in Experimental Pathology, was recently named a winner of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) Minority Hematology Graduate Award (MHGA). Amos is a member of the Krause Lab and a Medical Research Scholar.

The MHGA encourages graduate students from communities underserved and underrepresented in hematology in the United States and Canada to pursue a career in academic hematology. The award provides funding for students conducting research on hematology-focused projects and is open to doctoral students in their first, second, or third year of graduate school at the time of application.

Amos’ doctoral research focuses on understanding the molecular mechanisms of cancer development. His areas of interest include malignant hematology, where he is currently investigating the leukemogenic mechanism of a rare subtype of acute megakaryoblastic leukemia implicated by the RBM15-MKL1 fusion protein.

“I am thankful for the support I received from ASH,” Amos said. “This award will help me move one step closer to understanding the complexities of such a rare and fatal pediatric leukemia and potentially contribute to targeted treatment strategies in the future.”

“We were super excited to hear that Amos received this award. It is well deserved,” said Diane Krause, MD, PhD, Anthony N. Brady Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Professor of Pathology, and Principal Investigatory of the Krause Lab. “Over the next two years, Amos will determine the degree to which the RBM15-MKL1 fusion oncoprotein acts to promote leukemia via its direct association with the RNA methylation complex.”

Amos was born in the Philippines, immigrated to California’s Bay Area in 2009, and attended Diablo Valley College, where he obtained associate’s degrees with honors in biology, life science, and natural science. Next he attended UC Berkeley, where he earned his bachelor’s degree with high distinction in integrative biology. During his senior year, he began working at UCSF in the lab of Dr. Michelle Arkin in collaboration with the Accelerating Therapeutics for Opportunities in Medicine (ATOM) Consortium.

Amos is one of nine graduate students selected for the award, which provides the winning scientists an annual $40,000 stipend for a two-year period that can be used for tuition/salary/stipend, research, training-related expenses (including health insurance), and travel to the ASH Annual Meeting and Exposition. Program participants receive complimentary ASH membership throughout graduate school. During the ASH Annual Meeting, participants will attend the Minority Recruitment Initiative Luncheon and present their research at the Promoting Minorities in Hematology Presentations and Reception Event.

ASH is the world’s largest professional society of clinicians and scientists dedicated to conquering blood diseases. The MHGA is one of six programs under ASH’s Minority Recruitment Initiative, a series of programs committed to increasing the number of underrepresented minorities training in hematology-related fields and the number of underrepresented hematologists with academic and research appointments.

Submitted by Terence P. Corcoran on May 08, 2024