The 14;16 and 14;20 myeloma translocations are rare - in about 6% of all patients. These patients can respond to therapy just like normal risk patients, but the duration of their remission can be much shorter. Dr. Frank Zhan, MD, PhD describes his research to search a genetic database to find 100 genes that may be affected in the 14;16 and 14;120 myeloma translocations. That work led to search a compound database to find 5 possible drug targets that would impact the genes that are changed by these translocations (c-MAF for 14;16 and MAFB for 14;20). After testing these in the lab, one compound stood out that could stop the growth of cancer cells for c-MAF and MAFB - Allsterpaullone. In addition, Drs. Zhan and Tricot found that expression of Notch2 is strongly regulated in this MAF subgroup. Notch2 is an important gene related to cancer stem cells, drug resistance and the bone marrow microenvironment. The proposed research would be to use Allsterpaullone and a new Notch2 antibody now in clinical trials to provide the same length of remission (and beyond!) for this high-risk patient group. The Myeloma Crowd Radio Show with Dr. Frank Zhan, MD, PhD and Dr. Guido Tricot, MD, PhD
Dr. Tricot's most recent clinical studies focus on not only attacking myeloma cells but also the microenvironment that supports the survival and growth of myeloma cells. His work aims at finding treatments that are non-cross-resistant with current chemotherapy and therefore can eradicate the drug-resistant myeloma cells. His work on detailed genetics of myeloma cells should allow individualized therapies to ensure the greatest efficacy, while minimizing toxicity. Over the last 15 years, the median survival for patients newly diagnosed with myeloma has, in large part due to this work, increased from 2.5 to more than 10 years. The complete remission rate has increased from 5% to 80% and one third of all patients are still in complete remission at 10 years. He received his medical degree from Catholic University of Leuven and has been in practice for more than 20 years.
Myeloma survivor, patient advocate, wife, mom of 6. Believer that patients can help accelerate a cure by weighing in and participating in clinical research. Founder of the HealthTree Foundation.
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