The International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) will honor The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Sriram Krishnaswamy, PhD, at its annual meeting this summer. During the ISTH’s 2015 Congress, held in Toronto in June, Dr. Krishnawamy will receive a BACH Investigator Recognition Award for his work advancing our understanding of coagulation.
The Biennial Awards for Contributions to Hemostasis, or BACH, awards are given to researchers who “have made significant contributions to research and education in blood coagulation,” according to the ISTH site. Previous awardees include The Rockefeller University’s Barry S. Coller, MD, and Katherine A. High, MD, formerly of Children’s Hospital and now at Spark Therapeutics. Dr. Krishnaswamy’s fellow 2015 awardees include the University of North Carolina School of Medicine’s Nigel Mackman, PhD, and Timothy A. Springer, PhD, of Harvard University.
A thrombosis and hemostasis researcher, Dr. Krishnaswamy investigates the biochemical underpinnings of coagulation. In addition to his appointment at CHOP, Dr. Krishnaswamy is also a professor of Pediatrics in the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine. Dr. Krishnaswamy’s work is supported, in part, by grants from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, including an R01 and a P01 to study the mechanisms of blood coagulation.
Dr. Krishnaswamy has led or contributed to numerous papers on the mechanics of coagulation and related topics. Last year he contributed to a Blood study led by Rodney M. Camire, PhD that examined the development of prothrombinase, the enzyme complex responsible for thrombin formation. By shedding light on the location of prothrombinase formation, the study lays the ground for future research.
More recently, his lab has been investigating specific blood coagulation factors, with an eye toward better understanding the factors’ structure and how they contribute to prothrombinase assembly. In one line of research, Dr. Krishnaswamy and colleagues are studying the venom of the eastern brown snake, pseudonaja textilis. One of the most venomous snakes in the world, the eastern brown snake is found in Australia and New Guinea.
Following previous work published in Blood, Dr. Krishnaswamy and his colleagues — including CHOP’s Shekhar Kumar, PhD, and the University of Cambridge’s James Huntington, PhD — solved the x-ray structure of a protein in the venom of the eastern brown snake, which is very much like the human coagulation factor Va. Despite having similar structures, the mammalian and reptile factors have radically different functions, functioning, respectively, as hemostatic agents and toxins. Overall, the researchers’ work is leading to a greater understanding of how coagulation factors operate.
To learn more about hematology research and care at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, see the Division of Hematology.