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August 2002 Volume 5, Issue 2:
IMF World Events

Joerg Brosig, Ilse Hein, Michael Plankert, Johan Creemers, Prof. Heinz Ludwig, Dr. Sabine Schock, Dr. Janischewski, Ruth Baehler, Susie Novis, and Volker Filipp

Vienna, Austria

On April 27 and 28, 2002, the IMF held its 3rd Patient & Family Seminar in Vienna, Austria. The meeting was once again chaired and organized by IMF Scientific Advisor, Prof. Heinz Ludwig. The seminar began with welcome addresses from Prof. Ludwig, IMF President Susie Novis, and Jorg Brosig, who was representing the APMM Support Group from Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany. We were honored to have a distinguished faculty for this meeting, which included Dr. Johannes Drach, Dr. Brian Durie, Dr. Hermann Einsele, Dr. Hartmut Goldschmidt, Prof. Heinz Ludwig, Dr. Johannes Meran, Dr. Kathrin Strasser, Jutta Hellan and Birgit Suszdorf. The two day seminar format allowed the attendees to hear lectures and participate in discussions covering a broad range of topics, including myeloma for beginners, conventional chemotherapy, auto and allo transplantation, supportive therapies, treatment possibilities after relapse, myeloma bone disease, biologic and genetic factors, novel therapies and new technologies, treatment for fatigue, as well as complementary medicine and the art of living.

At the seminar, representatives from many of the myeloma support groups in Germany, Belgium, Austria, and Switzerland were recognized for their outstanding work in reaching out to members of the myeloma community. The IMF congratulates these groups and applauds their hard work and dedication. They inspire us all and remind us how important it is to help make a world of difference for patients and their families.

Tokyo, Japan

The IMF was pleased to welcome IMF (Japan) member Masahiro Namai to our Los Angeles headquarters. We had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Namai in November 2000 at the first IMF (Japan) Patient & Family Seminar. His visit to the headquarters allowed us to exchange ideas and to explore ways in which we can continue to work together in the future. Mr. Namai also attended a meeting of the Los Angeles Support Group. On June 15, he accompanied the group’s invited speaker, Dr. Brian G.M. Durie, Susie Novis, and IMF staffer Tanisha Hall to the meeting. Los Angeles Support Group leader, Janet Johnson, invited Mr. Namai to say a few words to the group. His emotional message reinforced the IMF’s committment to reach out to people, no matter where in the world they live, to offer support and let them know that they are not alone in their battle with myeloma.

For many years, IMF (Japan) founder Aki Horinouchi was the driving force behind the organization. He inspired IMF (Japan) members to support myeloma research and raised funding to benefit a research grant. Aki also had a dream to hold a Patient & Family Seminar in Japan. Tragically, Aki died just before he saw his dream become a reality in November 2000. However, IMF (Japan) has picked up where Aki left off, and today keeps his vision and spirit alive. In December 2001, the IMF was proud to award the grant sponsored by IMF (Japan) to Dr. Masahiro Abe of the University of Tokushima School of Medicine. An award was presented in memory of Aki to his wife Midori along with the IMF Outstanding Service Award.

Sydney, Australia

IMF Scientific Advisor, Dr. Douglas Joshua, will be holding the 3rd IMF Patient & Family Seminar in Australia. The IMF is proud to continue its partnership with Dr. Joshua and Novartis Pharmaceuticals in bringing the Patient & Family program to our members in Australasia. The meeting will be held on Friday, September 13, 2002 at the Crown Plaza Hotel, Coogee, NSW. Joining Dr. Joshua and participating as faculty for this meeting are IMF Scientific Advisors and IMF Board members, Dr. Brian Durie and Dr. Greg Mundy. Also participating will be Dr. John Gibson, Dr. Gordon Cook, and Dr. Stuart Dunn. Mr. R. Moran will speak about support groups in Australia.

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