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Myeloma Minute
June 5, 2009
Welcome to the IMF's Myeloma Minute
News about myeloma treatment, research, support and the myeloma community
from the International Myeloma Foundation.


The International Myeloma Foundation, the MDS Foundation and a Coalition of Patient Advocacy Organizations Call for Updated Rules for Reimbursement, Access and Approvals for New and Existing Cancer Treatments
A patient "Statement of Principles" was unveiled recently at the ASCO Meeting in Orlando, Florida. The principles emphasize equal insurance coverage, prevention research, continued innovation, early approvals, and expanded access to experimental drugs. Use the link to read the Principles and find out how to register your support.

Carfilzomib Phase 2 Trial (PX-171-003) Expanded
Trial is opened to enroll an additional 250 relapsed and refractory patients based on the positive data achieved and reported at ASCO. Results from this study could form the basis for a New Drug Application (NDA) filing for accelerated approval with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2010.

ASCO Highlights Webcasts
In the first webcasts from our coverage of the 2009 ASCO Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Orlando Florida, Drs. Durie and Rajkumar offer highlights from the research presented there.

Genzyme gets nod for Mozobil approval in Europe
Mozobil, in combination with growth factor drugs, helps move hematopietic stem cells from a person's bone marrow into the bloodstream, where they can be collected. It is already approved in the U.S.

Hemodialysis Improves Health of Multiple Myeloma Patients
Renal failure is a severe and relatively common complication experienced by patients with multiple myeloma. According to a study at the University Hospital Birmingham, in the United Kingdom, a new hemodialysis procedure can help restore kidney function and increase the lifespan of these patients. (from the American Journal of Hematology Oncology)

American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (AAOMS) position paper on bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws--2009 update
In September 2006, the AAOMS published a position paper on bisphosphonate-related osteonecrosis of the jaws (BRONJ). The position paper was developed by a task force composed of clinicians with extensive experience in caring for these patients and basic science researchers. The task force was re-convened in August 2008 to review the 2006 recommendations, appraise the current literature, and revise the paper and recommendations, where indicated. This update contains revisions to diagnosis and staging and management strategies, and highlights the status of basic science research. AAOMS considers it vitally important that this information be disseminated to other dental and medical specialties.

Ginger Helps Reduce Nausea from Chemotherapy
Ginger helped prevent or reduce chemotherapy-induced nausea when taken with traditional anti-nausea drugs by patients with cancer, researchers have found. (from NCI Cancer Bulletin)

Formaldehyde May Cause Some Blood Cancers, but Risk Drops over Time
Follow-up data from an ongoing study of U.S. industrial plant workers exposed to formaldehyde support previous findings of a possible link between formaldehyde exposure and risk of death from cancers of the blood and lymphatic system. (from NCI Cancer Bulletin)

Cancer Diagnosis Inspires Couple To Help Others
Our own Robin and Michael Tuohy were profiled on the local NBC channel for their work helping other myeloma patients.




  • Drug name: INCB18424
    Sponor: Incyte
    Indication: Selective, orally available JAK inhibitor currently in trials for myelofibrosis and in lab studies for myeloma

  • Drug name: pristemerin
    Sponsor: Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale
    Indication: a natural triterpenoid that induces suppression of cyclin D2. Synergistically cytotoxic with bortezomib.

  • Drug name: GMI-1070
    Sponsor: GlycoMimetics, Inc.
    Indication: pan-selectin inhibitor that reduces the rate at which mm cells home to the bone marrow from the bloodstream.

  • Drug name: BKT140
    Sponsor: Biokine Therapeutics
    Indication: antagonist to chemokine receptor CXCR4 that causes cancer cell death and induces the release of normal immune cells in the bone marrow.


  • Drug name: LY2127399
    Sponsor: Eli Lily and Company
    Indication: A Phase 1 safety study of LY2127399 (monoclonal antibody to B-cell activating factor) in combination with bortezomib in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma
    Trial sites:
    UCLA, Los Angeles; University of Iowa, Iowa City; Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston; University of Nebraska, Omaha; St. Vincent’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, New York, Fox Chase Cancer Center, Philadelphia.
    NCI trials link for further information: http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT00689507

  • Drug Name: IPH 2101 (NN 1975)
    Sponsors: Innate Pharma (Marseile, France) and Novo Nordisk A/S
    Indication: Safety, efficacy, and pharmacology study of fully human monoclonal antibody to NK inhibitory receptors
    Trial Sites: Ohio State University, Columbus, OH, Dr. Don Benson, PI ; Indiana University Cancer Center, Indianapolis, IN, Dr. Sherif Farag, PI; University of Texas CTRC Institute for Drug Development, San Antonio, TX, Dr. Alain Mita, PI


  • Drug name: natalizumab (Tysabri®)
    Sponsor: Biogen-Idec
    Indication: A Phase I/II, two-arm, dose-finding study of natalizumab for the treatment of subjects with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma
    Sites: Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, AZ

  • Drug name: BHQ880
    Sponsor: Novartis
    Indication: A study to assess BHQ880, an anti-DKK-1 antibody, in combination with zoledronic acid in relapsed/refractory myeloma

If you would like more information about any clinical trial, you can call the IMF Hotline at 800-452-CURE. The Myeloma Matrix has a current list of all myeloma trials from pre-clinical to recently FDA approved. 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 EmergingMed, with whom the IMF has entered into a partnership 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 (NCI). To see the summaries of newsworthy clinical trial results, visit the National Cancer Institute Multiple Myeloma Trial Results.

Note: Some of the international seminar cities have been set, but the venues and agendas are still in the works. Check back often if you are interested in attending, as we post the sites and speakers as they are confirmed.


  • Veterans Against Myeloma
    IMFer Jerry Walton encourages all vets to join Veterans Against Myeloma. "Many MM patients are veterans. Our combined efforts to continue our service through the Veterans Against Myeloma cause can help research and help us win the battle by finding a cure. Hopefully one day together we can say 'Mission Accomplished!'"
  • VISIONS Notecards by Jeff; A Cure for Karl
    Jeff Hanson is a 15 year-old, visually impaired artist from Overland Park, Kansas. IMFer Karl Vollstedt and Jeff are great friends who use their time and talents to benefit others. Jeff created these note cards as a gift to Karl and to myeloma research.
  • 2009 Generous HeART Calendar
    Fifteen-year-old Jeffrey Owen Hanson is legally blind. Despite this, he creates explosively brilliant art owned by famous art collectors like Elton John. Jeff is determined to help find a cure for myeloma because his friend, IMFer Karl Vollstedt, lives with it. So, when Jeff selected 12 charities to honor as months in his 2009 "Generous HeART" calendar, he immediately named IMF the month of June.
As a non-profit organization, the IMF is completely dependent on the support of our members. Tax-deductible 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.
Host an Afternoon Tea

How to Host an Afternoon Tea

Here’s an elegant and easy way to build awareness about myeloma and raise money in your community, and the IMF will help.

Kids Fight Back!
Kids, need to earn a Citizenship merit badge or fulfill community service requirements? Here’s a great idea about how to do both while you fight back against myeloma. We'll help you put on the best fundraiser ever!
AmEx Use Your American Express Membership Rewards to support IMF
Are you an American Express ® Cardmember? Do you collect Membership Rewards points? If so, you will be interested to learn that you can redeem your Membership Rewards points to help the IMF.
Shop for the IMF Shop for the IMF
Shop with the leading merchants on the Internet, receive the same price as anyone else visiting their sites, and support the IMF at the same time!
IMF Travel Advantage 12-Day Cruise in the Mediterranean for $499? AND you help the IMF?
No matter where you want to go, IMF Travel Advantage has a package for you.

Read the latest issue of the IMF Travel Advantage newsletter for this and other fabulous trips. Great prices and you are helping the IMF with every vacation.
See more exciting ways to help the IMF continue its important work in education, support and research.

Myeloma Manager
Have you downloaded your Myeloma Manager™ Personal Care Assistant™

Another exciting first from the IMF!
Free software to help manage and understand your lab results, and more!

Help for Underinsured Myeloma Patients
Thanks to the advocacy of the IMF, the Chronic Disease Fund has received an infusion of money to help them meet the needs of underinsured patients with multiple myeloma. The fund is designed to help patients with their insurance co-payments and/or their Medicare Part D 'doughnut holes.' Patients must qualify based on financial need. To speak with a representative of the Chronic Disease Fund, please call 877-968-7233, or contact them through their web site at cdfund.org.

A tool to help understand the current status of the disease and the questions you should be asking.
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Many thanks to the supporters of The Myeloma Minute:
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Please call the hotline (800) 452-CURE (800-452-2873) or email TheIMF@myeloma.org if you have any questions.
Copyright 2009. International Myeloma Foundation. All Rights Reserved.

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