Konstantinos Kokkaliaris, Ph.DInstructor

Konstantinos studied Biology at the National & Kapodistrian University of Athens before moving to the University of Edinburgh for his Master’s degree in Life Sciences. He received his PhD from Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich for thesis work at Helmholtz Center Munich (supervisor: Timm Schroeder) and research visit at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York (hosts: Kateri Moore & Ihor Lemischka). During his doctoral studies, he performed dynamic behavioral screening of niche-derived molecules, using continuous live-cell imaging with single-cell resolution. He identified dermatopontin as a novel factor that promotes early survival of freshly purified hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) and patented its use in maintaining their self-renewing potential ex vivo.

Early in his studies, Konstantinos was intrigued by the complexity of the in vivo bone-marrow (BM) microenvironment supporting adult HSCs. To explore this further, he continued as a postdoctoral researcher in Timm Schroeder’s new lab at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich). To overcome limitations of existing BM imaging technologies, he teamed up with colleagues towards developing a novel quantitative multicolor imaging approach that preserves tissue architecture and is compatible with visualization of large-volume tissue sections from any organ. Applying this approach to long bones, he characterized the spatial distribution and marker co-expression of key BM populations resulting in a quantitative 3D map of the BM microenvironment. His next goal is to identify the exact localization of HSCs in relation to putative niche components.

To further pursue his passion for hematopoiesis and expand his expertise to leukemia research, Konstantinos joined Dr. David Scadden’s laboratory in September 2018. Combining quantitative multidimensional imaging with high-throughput single-cell approaches and leukemia models, he aims at deciphering the effect of the local BM microenvironment on leukemia initiating cells, in different stages of the disease.

List of publications…