Dr. Spero Cataland

The Relationship of Complement Activation to Clinical Outcomes in Patients with Acquired Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura Mediated by Severe ADAMTS13 Deficiency

Dr. Spero Cataland, M.D.

Research Aims of this Study:

"The complement system is one important component of our immune system that is known to be central to the cause of atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS). There has been evidence recently that shows this same complement system is involved in TTP as well. Our research is dedicated to studying the role of the complement system in the initiation of an acute TTP episode, the early and late recurrence of a TTP episode, and the risk of dying from an acute episode of TTP."


How Dr. Cataland believes this research will impact individuals living with or impacted by TTP:

"I believe this research will ultimately benefit many patients diagnosed with TTP.  Whether it may be during their initial treatment, or during a sustained remission, they hope that the information that is gained will help to better predict future clinical outcomes, but more importantly afford the ability to intervene clinically to improve the care of patients diagnosed with TTP."

How Dr. Cataland became interested in TTP research:

"I joined the faculty of Ohio State University in July 2000 and was directly in charge of the care of patients with TTP, he began to ask questions regarding the treatment of these patients for which there seemed to be no clear answers. Shortly thereafter he was pointed in the direction of Dr. James George who encouraged and mentored him to find answers to these same questions that he had been asking. Dr. Cataland believes that he owes Dr. George an incredible debt of gratitude for his help and assistance that still continues to this day."

Comments from Dr. Cataland to donors:

"It is difficult to put into words the appreciation that we have for the donors that have supported and continue support our research into acquired TTP.  In the past several years there have been significant advances in our understanding of the diagnosis and treatment of this rare disorder.  Without question I believe these advances will translate in the very near future into improvements in both short and long term patient outcomes for all patients diagnosed with TTP.  None of this progress would be possible without the generous support and involvement of the many donors to the Answering TTP Foundation."

Research Outcome Summary:

"As a clinical researcher studying thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (TTP), I know full well the struggles associated with performing clinical research in a rare disease.  While TTP significantly impacts the lives of many patients and families, it is much rarer than other diseases making it increasingly difficult to receive research funding to answer important clinical questions.  The research support that our program received as an awardee of an AnsweringTTP research grant was therefore a key factor in allowing us to expand our research efforts to better understand the risk factors for relapse of TTP.

Patients that are diagnosed and successfully treated for TTP are unfortunately at risk for future relapses of the disease.  While there are treatments that can be used to prevent relapses of TTP in most patients, understanding the most important risk factors for relapse would allow us to be able to identify those patients most likely to benefit from these treatments, while avoiding the potential risks of these treatments in patients less likely to need or benefit from them.  We believe the research support provided by AnsweringTTP has brought us closer to being able to identify those at greatest risk for relapse of TTP.  By being better able to predict those at greatest risk for relapse, we can both prevent relapse in those at greatest risk, but equally importantly reassure those not at increased risk for relapse.  The research funding provided by AnsweringTTP to the TTP research community has clearly had a tremendous impact on our understanding of this rare blood disease, but more importantly on the lives of patients diagnosed with TTP."