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The Hope of the Future in Black Myeloma Health Event Review
Posted: Mar 29, 2023
The Hope of the Future in Black Myeloma Health Event Review  image

On February 23, 2023, the Black Myeloma Health Community Chapter hosted a special Black History Month Round Table event: Hope for the Future in Black Myeloma. This was a remarkable and memorable meeting featuring three Black myeloma doctors - Brandon Blue, Shakira Grant, and Ayo Fatoki, who shared  their views on why the future of Black myeloma health is filled with hope.

Hearing from our very own in a casual, conversational manner was a beautiful and unique experience for our Black Myeloma Community. We saw the synergy between the doctors and heard the understanding and connection of our culture in their responses. 

The three myeloma specialists had a twenty-minute presentation, followed by a twenty-minute interactive Q&A session. The audience was fully engaged and asked many excellent questions. 

Dr. Brandon Blue started this unique event with an excellent presentation on immunotherapies. He discussed when they are used and how patients can access these life-saving therapies. In his presentation, Dr. Blue spoke about a CAR-T clinical trial that is very hopeful. It involves upfront treatment and then going to stem cell transplant vs. upfront treatment and CAR-T therapy. While still very early in the clinical trial setting, this would be a game changer in the newly diagnosed scene.

Dr. Shakira Grant discussed the importance of Black participation in clinical research. She addressed barriers that many patients face regarding clinical trial enrollment, such as access, trust, financial barriers, and doctor bias.

Newcomer Dr. Ayo Fatoki spoke of his passion and enthusiasm in working in the myeloma field. Dr. Fatoki provided an excellent presentation on the African Diaspora. 

This event made HealthTree Foundation history as this was the first time three Black myeloma specialists gathered to speak to a Black myeloma community. It was also a historic step in the myeloma field. We are grateful to all three specialists for joining us and to the audience for asking such amazing questions. 

You can listen or watch the historic replay here:


The author Valarie Traynham

about the author
Valarie Traynham

Valarie Traynham has been a myeloma survivor since 2015. Wanting to be a source of support, provide patient education and encouragement to help others along their myeloma journey, she is a volunteer myeloma coach, myeloma support group leader and patient advocate. She enjoys being outdoors, reading, and trying new recipes.

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