Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009
Data suggests myeloma stem cell does exist
Carol Ann Huff, MD
Even after decades of research, clinicians continue to debate the existence of the cancer stem cell. A speaker at Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009 argued that these cells do exist, particularly in multiple myeloma. Carol Ann Huff, MD, of Johns Hopkins University, reported results of a murine study she and her colleagues conducted, which supports the existence of stem cells in multiple myeloma. [Read Article]
CHOP: When is it the best frontline therapy?
Steven Horwitz, MD
When asked about the best frontline strategy for treating peripheral T-cell lymphoma, Steven Horwitz, MD, responded that it is more a “state of asking questions than having concrete answers.” At the 2009 Lymphoma and Myeloma International Congress on Hematologic Malignancies in New York, Dr Horwitz discussed the use of CHOP first in most, but not all types of PTCL. [Read Article]
Speaker likens new drug development in lymphoma to car industry
Bruce D. Cheson, MD
Current therapies cure 60% to 70% of patients with large-cell lymphoma, which means 30% to 40% are not being cured. And patients with incurable indolent and mantle cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma experience repeated relapses. New drugs are definitely needed to treat these patients. But do we need as many agents as are being developed? Bruce D. Cheson, MD, provided his perspective on new drug development in lymphoma at the Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009 meeting held recently in New York City. [Read Article]
Revised guidelines should be used in all clinical trials of MM
S. Vincent Rajkumar, MD
Some say a single set of guidelines for a certain disease is the only way to ensure the comparison of results across clinical trials is truly accurate. A presenter at Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009 attempted to make this exact point. S. Vincent Rajkumar, MD, of Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, said there should be one set of guidelines that is specific to trials of multiple myeloma. So he and his colleagues at the International Myeloma Working Group (IMWG) formed a consensus panel to create one. [Read Article]
Should MCL be treated aggressively?
Andre Goy, MD
Though aggressive therapy has been shown to improve progression-free survival (PFS) in mantle cell lymphoma (MCL), some in the medical community say that is not enough to advocate its widespread use. Peter Martin, MD, told the audience at Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009 that prolonged PFS is not the same as prolonged overall survival, and therefore, aggressive treatment should be avoided in most MCL patients. In an opposing presentation, Andre Goy, MD, argued that a majority of patients with MCL should receive aggressive therapy. [Read Article]
Speaker says taking care of CLL patients is no cinch
Kanti Rai, MD
With the wealth of prognostic markers available, both old and new, treating patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) would appear to be a “cinch.” But guess again, says Kanti Rai, MD, of Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York. He tackled the question of how to make sense of prognostic markers while treating patients, at the recent Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009 meeting in New York City. [Read Article]
New test shows prognostic value in MM
Arthur R. Bradwell, MD
A novel method of measuring immunoglobulin is more sensitive than traditional techniques and demonstrates prognostic value in multiple myeloma (MM), according to a speaker at Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009. Arthur R. Bradwell, MD, of the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom, began his talk by saying that serum protein electrophoresis and immunofixation electrophoresis sometimes fall short in detecting and quantifying immunoglobulin alpha (IgA) monoclonal proteins. And measurement of total IgA is not always useful. [Read Article]
CTAs are promising therapeutic targets in MM
A new study suggests that cancer testis antigens (CTAs) should be therapeutically targeted in patients with multiple myeloma (MM). The study revealed that CTAs are frequently expressed in newly diagnosed MM patients, the presence of certain CTAs can help predict poor survival, and MM patients experience spontaneous antibody responses to CTAs. Adam Cohen, MD, of Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, presented this research at Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009, where it was deemed “the best myeloma abstract.” [Read Article]
Is the FLIPI on its way to becoming obsolete?
John P. Leonard, MD
Though the follicular lymphoma international prognostic index (FLIPI) has proven useful in guiding treatment decisions, an expert says the system has its limitations. At Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009, John P. Leonard, MD, of Weill Cornell Medical College, discussed the ways in which the FLIPI has aided physicians in treating patients. But he also suggested that, as time has passed, the FLIPI’s relevance may have deteriorated. [Read Article]
PET scans in lymphoma: How useful are they?
Some in the medical community have dubbed PET the “next best thing” in the management of lymphomas, while others say PET scans offer few, if any, tangible benefits. Two speakers at Lymphoma & Myeloma 2009 discussed these opposing views in a rousing debate. Rebecca Elstrom, MD, detailed the shortcomings of PET scans, while Martin Hutchings, MD, PhD, discussed the promise PET has shown. [Read Article]