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October 15, 2003 Myeloma Minute
What's News
  • New drug therapies offer hope to multiple myeloma patients
    A nice general article on myeloma and VELCADE. (from the Carolina News)

  • Millennium Receives Assignment of Medicare Code for VELCADETM
    Hospitals may obtain reimbursement for VELCADE injections under the hospital outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) effective October 1, 2003.

  • A 'monstrous' drug hurdle
    Pharmion to market thalidomide to Europe as cancer fighter. (from Denver Post)

  • Jury selection to begin in IBM cancer lawsuit
    "According to a 'corporate mortality file,' an unusually large number of workers were struck with lymph, blood, breast and brain cancers, as well as non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, leukemia and myeloma in their 30s, 40s and 50s." (from the New York Times. The quote is from an earlier article in The Detroit News.)

  • Cell `janitors' tag unwanted substances for removal
    This waste-disposal apparatus is known as the ubiquitin system because it's ubiquitous, meaning everywhere. Tagged substances are executed by a proteasome. Drugs that control proteasome are already in clinical trials for the treatment of myeloma. (from Knight Ridder)

  • EUROCARE 3 - new European cancer survival figures
    Survival figures for cancer in Europe show large differences between countries – more than can reasonably be accounted for by artefact, bias or chance (from EurekAlert)

  • Message from the Editor of the Myeloma Minute
    The Minute has been on hiatus for the last couple of weeks while the Minute office was being rehabilitated and remodeled. But we're back now, and ready and eager to go. After this week, the Minute will appear in your e-mailbox every Friday. Thank you for your patience.

What's New in Myeloma Research:
What's New in Clinical Trials:

If you would like to browse trials currently open for enrollment, visit the Clinical Trials page of the IMF web site. Among the links, you will find CenterWatch and EmergingMed. The IMF has entered into partnerships with them to assist you in matching trials to your particular patient profile (i.e., stage of disease, previous treatment, how well you are able to carry out the activities of daily living, etc.) and by doing so, increase your chances of being eligible. You can also learn more about clinical trials by reviewing materials from the National Cancer Institute.

Advocacy Update:
  • Focus on seniors' drug needs shortchanges other worries
    Some seniors who exchange the new Medicare plan for the drug coverage they now get through former employers or separate health policies would see their out-of-pocket expenses rise, the Senate Budget Committee reports. And as many as 37% of seniors who now get a drug benefit from former employers could lose it, according to the Congressional Budget Office. But that's only part of the problem. (an Op Ed piece from USA Today)
    See related article: Insurers Seek Changes in Prescription Drug Plans
    Concern that insurers won't participate has given the industry added political leverage. (from Newhouse News Service)

Quality of Life Update:

Upcoming Seminars and Conferences:

Upcoming Fundraisers:

FUNdraising Made Easy
You know you want to do something, but deciding on what to do can be confusing. The IMF can help. This year, our members really rallied 'round the cause, picked up the gauntlet, and raised a lot of money for myeloma research and programs.

We are already getting calls from new members who want to join in the effort and hold an event in 2004. Suzanne Battaglia is waiting for your call. She is here to help you plan and execute your event, so please write, call or email (SBattaglia@myeloma.org) so that you can get on our Calendar of Events!

See what you can do in your community to help further the goal of finding the cure!

Exciting Opportunities

Items of Interest:
  • Understanding Thalidomide Therapy on the Web
    Read it on the web or download and print the PDF document. Available in English, Spanish, French, German, and Italian.

  • The National Cancer Institute (NCI) Office of Education and Special Initiatives is looking for patients, family caregivers, and physicians who are interested in participating in telephone focus groups and in-depth interviews. Payment will be provided to all participants.
    BANK ON A CURE is an innovative and powerful concept designed to establish a method to find new treatments for multiple myeloma and other related diseases as well as the possibility of new cures, while customizing care for current patients.
  • Myeloma Matrix
    The Myeloma Matrix provides updated information about drugs beginning with pre-clinical developments and tracks drugs as they proceed through Phases I – III of clinical trials, drugs that have been FDA approved, and information on trials that are being conducted by NCI- sponsored cooperative groups as well as other myeloma study groups. The online version is updated regularly. If you would like to have a printed copy, call the toll-free hotline (800) 452-2873.
  • International Prognostic Index
    The International Myeloma Foundation is proud to sponsor the International Prognostic Index (IPI) Classification for Multiple Myeloma. Nearly twenty myeloma institutions from around the world are collaborating to create an updated staging system for multiple myeloma.
  • NexCura Cancer Profiler
    The Cancer Profiler is a free service (no hidden fees or charges). Its tools provide you with information specific to your cancer diagnosis to help you make more informed treatment decisions along with your physician.
  • Expert Opinions on Multiple Myeloma
    A multimedia, CME-accredited program for physicians with the chance to see world-renowned myeloma specialists sharing their knowledge, discussing treatment choices, and comparing their perspectives on controversial issues in multiple myeloma and related diseases.
  • Myeloma At The Movies
    It has been our goal to bring our Patient & Family Seminars to people around the country who might not be able to attend an actual meeting, so we have set up a video lending library.
  • HealthTalk's Multiple Myeloma Education Network
    Put this site in your favorites folder.

Shop for the IMF!

Many of the internet's most popular merchants will donate a portion of your purchases to the IMF if you enter their sites using the links on our Shop For The IMF page. You can also use the special shortcut URLs listed below:

So, Shop For The IMF by using these links to the same get great service and low prices you're used to while helping support the IMF!

Help Us Help Others...
As a non-profit organization, the IMF is completely dependent on the support of our members. Please consider showing your support by making a tax-deductible donation today. Donations in honor of a friend or family member make great gifts and are a wonderful way to celebrate a special occasion. You can donate online or by calling the IMF at (800) 452-CURE. We sincerely thank you for your support.

View Back Issues Online...
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