Our CEO Rosemarie Finley and our Director of Research, Dr Simon Ridley, are set to attend the 59th American Society of Hematology Conference (ASH) in Atlanta, Georgia on 9 – 12 December.
ASH is an important conference for myeloma and haematology healthcare professionals and researchers worldwide. The event provides an opportunity for researchers and clinicians to present and discuss ground-breaking research, the latest results from clinical trials and further progress research into myeloma and other blood diseases.
Highlights from the upcoming conference include trials from Myeloma UK’s Clinical Trial Network:
Professor Kwee Yong from UCLH will present a first analysis of Phase II of the MUK five trial. The MUK five phase II study compared the activity and safety of Kyprolis (carfilzomib) against Velcade (bortezomib) in triplet combinations with cyclophosphamide and dexamethasone in patients who have had their first relapse or are primary refractory.
It is hoped that data from this study may help towards the approval of carfilzomib for wider use on the NHS. Carfilzomib is currently available in combination with dexamethasone for relapsed and/or refractory patients in Scotland, and for relapsed and/or refractory patients who have not previously received bortezomib in England and Wales.
The research being presented from this trial which opened back in 2016 looks at the progress the trial has made to strengthen the evidence that a triple combination of cyclophosphamide, pomalidomide (Imnovid®) and dexamethasone improves progression-free survival in relapsed and/or refractory myeloma patients, compared with pomalidomide and dexamethasone alone. In addition, the trial aims to identify genetic biomarkers of response to treatment.
While the trial is still ongoing, Dr Martin Kaiser of the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) will present some important interim results so far.
The latest Myeloma UK Clinical Trial, MUK nine, will be discussed, outlining what the trial hopes to achieve. MUK nine launched in September 2017 and is the first UK-wide trial using state-of-the-art genetic techniques to ‘stratify’ treatment for genetically-defined ‘high-risk’ myeloma patients.
As the trial is at an early stage, Dr Vallari Shah from the ICR, will be presenting the aims of the study including methods and initial findings.
There are two further pieces of laboratory research from the ICR being presented at ASH which were also funded in part by Myeloma UK:
Genetic analyses of bone marrow
Myeloma XI is a large, Phase III trial for newly-diagnosed myeloma. Researchers at the ICR have performed genetic analyses of bone marrow samples from trial participants. This ASH poster presentation looks at abnormalities in a particular gene called TP53 and correlates them with clinical outcomes – highlighting the potential diagnostic and prognostic value of investigating this gene
Targeting biochemical pathways
This early-stage drug discovery research uses an experimental drug to target a biochemical pathway called the Heat Shock Response. The ASH presentation shows that this drug was effective against myeloma cells in a dish and has the potential to be a new type of treatment for myeloma patients. Further investigations are now needed to see if it could be trialled in the clinic.