Stella T Chou, M.D.

faculty photo
Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Department: Pediatrics
Graduate Group Affiliations

Contact information
3615 Civic Center Boulevard
Abramson Research Building, Room 316D
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Office: 215-590-0947
Fax: 215-590-4834
B.A. (History)
Duke University, 1995.
New York Medical College, 2000.
Permanent link
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Description of Research Expertise

The focus of my laboratory is to investigate mechanisms of normal hematopoietic development and how these become disrupted in hematologic diseases, including leukemia.

Blood development, stem cells, hematologic diseases, leukemia, sickle cell disease

Research Details
My laboratory uses induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and primary human cells to model hematopoietic development and to study benign and malignant blood disorders. We primarily focus on erythro-megakaryocytic development and the role of genetic modifiers in anemia, thrombocytopenia, and myeloproliferative disorders. We examine how mutations or gene dosage of transcription factors affect blood development, including understanding the role of trisomy 21 (Down syndrome) and mutated transcription factor GATA-1 in hematologic disorders.

Another focus of my laboratory aims to improve red blood cell (RBC) therapy for patients with sickle cell disease (SCD) using novel approaches. We showed that Rh alloimmunization in patients with SCD remains a significant problem due to inheritance of variant RH. Current work examines whether genetically matched blood at RH and other blood group loci is feasible for patients with SCD. My laboratory is creating customized iPSCs with rare blood group antigen combinations as renewable sources of RBC reagents to improve antibody identification in patients with SCD. Ultimately, these same cells will serve as proof of principal for a universal donor red cell product generated from iPSCs.

Rotation Projects
Please contact Dr. Chou at chous@email.chop.edu for details on specific projects.

Lab Personnel
Annie Sit, postdoctoral researcher
Claire An, research technician
Nishi Gheewala, research technician
Stacey Uter, research coordinator
Sarah Waldis, medical student

Description of Clinical Expertise

Pediatric Hematology, Transfusion Medicine, Transfusion therapy in sickle cell disease.

Selected Publications

Tasian SK, Casas JA, Posocco D, Gandre-Babbe S, Gagne AL, Liang G, Loh ML, Weiss MJ, French DL, Chou ST: Mutation-specific signaling profiles and kinase inhibitor sensitivities of juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia revealed by induced pluripotent stem cells. Leukemia 33(1): 181-190, Jan 2019.

Coleman S, Westhoff CM, Friedman DF, Chou ST: Alloimmunization in patients with sickle cell disease and underrecognition of accompanying delayed hemolytic transfusion reactions. Transfusion 59: 2282-91, Apr 2019.

Grevet JD, Lan X, Hamagami N, Edwards CR, Sankaranarayanan L, Ji X, Bhardwaj SK, Face CJ, Posocco DF, Abdulmalik O, Keller CA, Giardine B, Sidoli S, Garcia BA, Chou ST, Liebhaber SA, Hardison RC, Shi J, Blobel GA: Domain-focused CRISPR screen identifies HRI as a fetal hemoglobin regulator in human erythroid cells. Science 361(6399): 285-290, July 2018.

Chou ST, Evans P, Vege S, Coleman SL, Friedman DF, Keller M, Westhoff CM: RH genotype matching for transfusion support in sickle cell disease. Blood 132(11): 1198-1207, Sep 2018 Notes: *featured article.

Chou ST, Flanagan JM, Vege S, Luban NLC, Brown RC, Ware RE, Westhoff CM : Whole exome sequencing for RH genotyping and alloimmunization risk in children with sickle cell anemia. Blood Adv 1(18): 1414-1421, Aug 2017.

Byrska-Bishop M, VanDorn D, Campbell AE, Betensky M, Arca PR, Yao Y, Gadue P, Costa FF, Nemiroff RL, Blobel GA, French DL, Hardison RC, Weiss MJ, Chou ST: Pluripotent stem cells reveal erythroid-specific activities of the GATA1 N-terminus. J Clin Invest 125(3): 993-1005, Jan 2015.

Giani FC, Fiorini C, Wakabayashi A, Ludwig LS, Salem RM, Jobaliya CD, Regan SN, Ulirsch JC, Liang G, Steinberg-Shemer O, Guo MH, Esko T, Tong W, Brugnara C, Hirschhorn JN, Weiss MJ, Zon LI, Chou ST, French DL, Musunuru K, Sankaran VG: Targeted application of human genetic variation can improve red blood cell production from stem cells. Cell Stem Cell 18(1): 73-78, Jan 2016.

Chou ST, Jackson T, Vege S, Smith-Whitley K, Friedman DF, Westhoff CM: High prevalence of red blood cell alloimmunization in sickle cell disease despite transfusion from Rh-matched minority donors. Blood 122(6): 1062-71, May 2013.

Chou ST, Byrska-Bishop M, Tober JM, Yao Y, Vandorn D, Opalinska JB, Mills JA, Choi JK, Speck NA, Gadue P, Hardison RC, Nemiroff RL, French DL, Weiss MJ: Trisomy 21-associated defects in human primitive hematopoiesis revealed through induced pluripotent stem cells. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 109(43): 17573-8, Oct 2012.

Chou ST, Opalinska JB, Yao Y, Fernandes MA, Kalota A, Brooks JS, Choi JK, Gewirtz AM, Danet-Desnoyers GA, Nemiroff RL, Weiss MJ: Trisomy 21 enhances human fetal erythro-megakaryocytic development. Blood 112(12): 4503-6, Dec 2008.

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Last updated: 03/01/2021
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