Maria Kleppe, Ph.D.

Technical Specialist
New York

Maria Kleppe is a first-honor Pharmacy Degree holder and Ph.D.-level scientist with more than 10 years of distinguished performance in the field. As a Technical Specialist in Ballard Spahr’s Patents Group, Ria leverages her extensive research experience and technical training to assist in intellectual property matters. Ria drafts and assists in prosecuting patent applications in various areas, including immunology, biotechnology, drug development, life sciences, pharmaceuticals, molecular biology, and medical devices. She also performs research for opinion letters and assists with litigation and pre-litigation strategic planning.

Ria obtained her Pharmacy degree in 2007 from the University of Marburg in Germany. In 2011, she completed her Ph.D. in biomedical sciences at the University of Leuven in Belgium, where she studied the role of protein tyrosine phosphatase PTPN2 in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia and lymphoma. She then joined the laboratory of Dr. Ross Levine at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.


Areas of Research Experience

Hematology, oncology, immunology, cancer genetics, inflammation, biotechnology, and medical devices.

Areas of Technical Expertise

  • General biochemistry: Assay development, immunoblotting, immunoprecipitation, sub-cellular fractionation, fluorometric in vitro kinase and phosphatase assay, luciferase assays.
  • Genome wide analysis: RNA- and ChIP-Seq data analysis, exome sequencing and targeted sequencing analysis
  • General molecular biology: Cloning, PCR, Primer design for Q-PCR, Q-PCR and analysis, site-directed mutagenesis, mRNA isolation, Chromatin IP assays (ChIP), genomic DNA isolation, dd-PCR, and gene knock out using Crispr/Cas9 (cellular system).
  • Eukaryotic cell culture (including primary as well as immortalized cell lines): Culture human and mouse hematopoietic and breast cancer cells and primary cells; stable and transient protein expression; colony formation assays, single cell proliferation assays, gene silencing by shRNA as well as siRNA; drug treatment of the cells
  • Cell and cancer biology related techniques: Flow cytometry: 10-color, intracellular (phospho-flow, cytokines, cell cycle, apoptosis), CyTOF (panel build up, staining, analysis), Analysis of proteins: subcellular localization and dynamics through immunofluorescence, immunohistochemistry (IHC), soft agar colony formation assay, colony formation assay, cell viability assays, cell proliferation assays (MTT)
  • Animal work: Xenograft (breast, melanoma, colon, pancreas), bone marrow transplantation, tissue collection, single cell preparation, extensive experience with preclinical drug studies

Professional Highlights

Recognition & Accomplishments

American Society of Hematology (ASH) Scholar Award, 2016

ASH Abstract Achievement Award, 2015

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Fellow Award, 2013


Kleppe M, Koche R, Zou L, van Galen P, Hill CE, Dong L, De Groote S, Papalexi E, Hanasoge Somasundara AV, Cordner K, Keller M, Farnoud N, Medina J, McGovern E, Reyes J, Roberts J, Witkins M, Rapaport F, Teruya-Feldstein J, Qi J, Rampal R, Bernstein BE, Bradner JE, Levine RL. (2017) Dual targeting of oncogenic activation and inflammatory signaling increases therapeutic efficacy in myeloproliferative neoplasms. Cancer Cell. S1535-6108(17)30512-3

Kleppe M, Spitzer MH, Li S, Hill CE, Dong L, Papalexi E, De Groote S, Bowman RL, Keller M, Koppikar P, Rapaport FT, Teruya-Feldstein J, Gandara J, Mason CE, Nolan GP, Levine RL. (2017) Jak1 integrates cytokine sensing to regulate hematopoietic stem cell function and stress hematopoiesis. Cell Stem Cell. 21(4):489-501.e7

Kleppe M, Kwak M, Koppikar P, Riester M, Keller M, Bastian L, Hricik T, Bhagwat N, McKenney AS, Papalexi E, Abdel-Wahab O, Rampal R, Marubayashi S, Chen JJ, Romanet V, Fridman JS, Bromberg J, Teruya-Feldstein J, Murakami M, Radimerski T, Michor F, Fan R, Levine RL. (2015) JAK-STAT pathway activation in malignant and non- malignant cells contributes to MPN pathogenesis and therapeutic response. Cancer Discov. 5(3):316-31. PMID: 25572172



KU. Leuven, Belgium (Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, 2011)

Hessian State Examination Office for Health Care Professionals, Germany (R.Ph., Pharmacy, 2007)

Phillips University Marburg, Germany (M.Sc., Pharmacy, 2006)


Fluent in German