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HemaBites showcase hematology news & short commentaries on recent high-impact articles published in international journals. This blog will keep you up to date with the latest discoveries in the field of hematology as well as other related hematology news.

Wednesday, June 29, 2022


The Hague, June 2022 - HemaSphere, the official peer-reviewed journal of the European Hematology Association (EHA), has received its first Journal Impact Factor™. The preliminary 2021 Journal Impact Factor for HemaSphere is 8.3, placing the journal in the top 15 (first quartile) of all hematology journals in the Journal Citation Report (JCR). Journal Impact Factors, released annually in June by Clarivate Analytics, calculate the frequency of journal article citations over a period of time, thus helping to indicate the impact of a journal to its related field.

HemaSphere published its first issue in December 2017. Over the past five years, HemaSphere has continued to expand, ensuring highly relevant and cutting-edge basic, translational, and clinical hematology research publications are accessible to everyone in the hematology community. The receipt of HemaSphere's first Journal Impact Factor is a significant milestone that reflects the journal's quality, trajectory, and impact criteria.

Elizabeth Macintyre, MD, PhD (EHA President) comments:

“It is an absolute pleasure to see HemaSphere's first impact factor of 8.3. This is a true testament to the quality and wide ranging value of the HemaSphere content, and clearly establishes HemaSphere as the up-and-coming hematology resource in Europe and beyond."

Jan Cools, PhD (HemaSphere Editor in Chief) comments:

“I feel very privileged to have been able to shape this new hematology journal with EHA and the editorial team, based on the core values of excellent open access science. Extremely happy with this result and looking forward to future developments!"

The positive Journal Impact Factor of 8.3 signifies the caliber of the research published at HemaSphere. While the receipt of an impact factor is an important new achievement for the journal, HemaSphere remains deeply committed to rigorous peer-review, continued quality, and accessible open access publications.

About HemaSphere

HemaSp​​here is an open access journal powered by the European Hematology Association (EHA), and published by Wolters Kluwer Health. HemaSphere publishes results of high-impact basic, translational, and clinical hematology research. HemaSphere is the premier hematology information resource, furthering its reach with the journal's HemaTopics section, which provides insightful discussions on all aspects related to hematology, including reports of new therapies, discussions on European policy, and other related hematology news. HemaSphere has a 2021 impact factor of 8.3, is indexed in PubMed Central (PMC), Scopus, and in Clarivate Analytics' Science Citation Index Expanded (SCIE) – Hematology and CC/Clinical Medicine – Hematology sections. HemaSphere is dedicated to supporting hematology patient care, research, and education worldwide.


Jessica Mastrodomenico, Scientific Publications Editorial Manager
Email: [email protected]

​Jun 2022 re-posted from Press releases

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Melania Tesio: UR LIB « Lymphoma Immuno-Biology", CIRI Lyon, Institut national de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM)


Disease heterogeneity is a hallmark of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). This is a  multifaceted aspect, which concerns genetics, epigenetics, cellular compositions and clinical responses. Evolving during disease progression and relapse, heterogeneity represents a major challenge in AML treatment.  To understand how genetic and cellular heterogeneity shapes therapies  responses, Andy Zeng1 undertook an analysis of cellular hierarchies at a very large scale. By using single cell reference profiles of AML stem, progenitor and mature cells, the authors deconvoluted bulk AML transcriptomic profiles of more than 1000 patients. This analysis was next integrated with the genomic profiles, functional stem cells properties and patients clinical outcome. This enabled the researches to refine previous published data and to identify four cellular hierarchies-based clusters: primitive AML (endowed of a shallow hierarchy and enriched in leukemia stem-progenitor cells), mature AML (endowed of a step hierarchy and enriched in mature monocytes-like and conventional dendritic-cells like), GMP  AML (enriched in GMP-like blasts) and intermediate AML (showing a balance distribution of AML primitive, progenitor and mature cells). The researchers next performed a principal component analysis whereby they separated the cellular hierarchies along two principal components, namely PC1 (hierarchies spanning from primitive to GMP) and PC2 (hierarchies spanning from primitive to mature) (Figure). Variations of the cellular composition along the first component associated with prognostic cytogenetic alterations and the response to chemotherapy. Variations of  the cellular composition along the second component associated instead with common driver mutations and with the ex vivo response to new investigational drugs. (Figure). A 7- genes score was next identified from the transcription profile associated with the PC2 component. Remarkably, it significantly associated with the sensitivity to 105 drugs. Taken together, the elegant study by Andy Zeng and colleagues provides a novel hierarchy-based classification framework which may have important implications in clinical settings. Patients stratification based on this classification may help identifying the patients subsets that are more likely to respond to a specific drug or drug combination. 


​Figure modified from Zeng A, et al. Nat Med. 2022​.


  1. Zeng AGX, et al. Nat Med. 2022 May 26. [Epub ahead of print].

Monday, May 23, 2022

Roger EG Schutgens: Van Creveldkliniek, Benign Hematology Center, University Medical Center Utrecht and University Utrecht, The Netherlands


Pyruvate kinase (PK) is an important enzyme in the human body encoded by 2 genes: PKM in muscles and PKLR in liver (PKL) and red blood cells (PK-R). PK-R catalyses the final and irreversible step in glycolysis, converting phosphoenolpyruvate to pyruvate, with concomitant formation of the energy carrier molecule adenosine triphosphate (ATP)1. As red blood cells have no mitochondria, they completely rely on this glycolytic process for energy generation. PK-R exists in equilibrium between a less active T-state and a more active R-state. In 2017, a small-molecule allosteric activator (AG-438) of both wildtype PK-R as well as mutated PK-R enzymes associated with PK deficiency was shown to induce the active R-state of the PK-R tetramer1.

Patients with mutations in the gene encoding for PK-R suffer from chronic hemolytic anemia, a disease called pyruvate kinase deficiency (PKD). Recently, AG-438 (now called mitapivat) has shown its effectiveness in a randomised controlled trial in 80 patients with PKD2. The primary outcome was the percentage of patients with at least a 1.5 g/dL increase in hemoglobin levels after 24 weeks. This was seen in 16/40 (40%) patients receiving mitapivat versus no patients on placebo. Overall, patients who received mitapivat had a significantly greater response than those who received placebo (mean change in hemoglobin level from baseline 1.7 g/dl [95% CI, 1.3 to 2.1] vs. -0.1 g/dl [95% CI, –0.6 to 0.3]).

The renewed interest for pyruvate kinase as regulator of red blood cell homeostasis and as target for intervention might be a breakthrough in treatment of rare haemolytic anemias. Mitapivat is currently under investigation for thalassemia and sickle cell disease in animal models and human phase 1/2 trials with promising results3,4. ​


1. Kung C, et al. Blood. 2017;130(11):1347-1356.

2. Al-Samkari, et al. N Engl J Med. 2022;386(15):1432-1442.

3. Xu JZ, et al. Blood. 2022 May 16. [Epub ahead of print].

4. van Dijk MJ, et al. Am J Hematol. 2022 Apr 5. [Epub ahead of print]. ​

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Donna Kirby: EHA/HemaSphere, The Hague, The Netherlands

You still have the opportunity to share your work at the largest hematology congress in Europe, the EHA2022 Hybrid Congress - held this year from June 9 to June 12 both in Vienna, Austria and online.


Submission for late-breaking abstracts is open for a limited time only, beginning May 6 and closing 09:00 CEST May 12. Accepted late-breaking abstracts will be presented orally during the Congress' dedicated Late-breaking Abstract Session on June 12, 2022.


 If you meet the late-breaking abstract submission criteria below, then you still have time to submit:

  • Are the results of your research new?
  • Is your research exciting and ground-breaking?
  • Was the data not yet available on March 1, 2022?


Submit your late-breaking abstract between May 6-12 and take the opportunity to share the results of your latest clinical or non-clinical research.  The submission page and further details can be found here.

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

Donna Kirby: EHA/HemaSphere, The Hague, The Netherlands

Did you know that the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) at the European Medicines Agency (EMA) publicly releases its monthly meeting highlights? These highlights include medicines recommended for approval, negative opinions on new medicines, recommendations on extensions of therapeutic indication, and more. We are pleased to alert you to this important information, and to specifically feature the hematology-related updates from the committee.

 In March, the CHMP granted a positive opinion for a conditional marketing authorization for Carvykti  (ciltacabtagene autoleucel),  a new gene therapy for the treatment of multiple myeloma.  Carvykti had support through EMA's PRIME scheme, a platform for early and enhanced dialogue with developers of promising new medicines that address unmet medical needs.

 After reviewing an application to extend the use of Vyxeos liposomal (daunorubicin / cytarabine), CHMP's conclusion was to not recommend including the treatment of young patients (ages 1 to 21 years) with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) to the authorized indications.  

 You can access the full March 2022 CHMP meeting highlights freely; click here. ​