Dr. C. Ola Landgren, MD, PhD, The National Cancer Institute
Interview date: August 2, 2013
On this week's show, we learned from Dr. Landgren that new tests in flow cytometry are available that can detect minimal residual disease (MRD) and help us gain more insight into our personal type of myeloma, but that there is a 100x variation factor in the result depths of these these tests, even in myeloma clinics within the United States. Asking the right questions of your doctor and the lab where your work is performed is critical to the understanding of your disease and its accurate diagnosis. We learned how imaging studies like MRIs can give us significant information about the biology of myeloma cells in addition to the flow cytometry tests. He discussed the profile of the MGUS patient and how smoldering myeloma needs to be separated into more specific groupings to be accurately diagnosed and treated. He described his "blueprint" for a myeloma cure and his work on the Black Swan Initiative in asking the appropriate questions that need to be answered to find a cure. He believes a cure can be found if we assume that it can be, and if we ask the right questions that drive to greater discoveries, beginning with more detailed diagnostic work at the molecular level and in early stages of myeloma. The live mPatient Radio podcast with Dr. Landgren
C. Ola Landgren, MD, PhD, is Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Myeloma Program, and Leader of the Experimental Program at the University of Miami Sylvester Cancer Center. Read more about his move to Miami here. Dr. Landgren is a pioneer in the drug development and minimal residual disease (MRD) testing in myeloma. In collaboration with colleagues throughout the world, he develops new strategies (including cell-based, molecular-based, and imaging-based) and continues to be a leader of using advanced MRD testing in clinical trials. He is involved in the service’s rational treatment program (small molecule, monoclonal antibody, immune-based) for newly diagnosed, relapsed and refractory myeloma and amyloidosis patients. His research focuses on early drug development, advanced disease monitoring by new minimal residual disease (MRD) assays and biomarkers, and immune-PET to monitor treatment. He also studies mechanism and markers of progression from MGUS/smoldering myeloma to symptomatic multiple myeloma, and the identification of high-risk precursor patients who may be candidates for early treatment. Prior to joining Miami, Dr. Landgren was the Chief Attending Physician of the Myeloma Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering and Professor of Medicine at the Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City and Chief of the Multiple Myeloma Section of the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, MD. Dr. Landgren received his MD at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden; and he has had fellowships at Karolinska University Hospital and the National Cancer Institute. He is a frequent speaker at national and international meetings, and has published more than 400 peer-reviewed papers.
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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