Jonathan Kaufman, MD
Emory University Winship Cancer Institute
Interview Date: October 23, 2020
The quest for individualized myeloma treatment is one every multiple myeloma patient hopes to find. For patients with the translocation of t(11;14), one drug may be helpful - venetoclax. In early clinical trials, venetoclax was seen to have particular impact for t(11;14) myeloma. Currently, several trials are open studying the use of venetoclax with other standard of care myeloma drugs. Dr. Jonathan Kaufman has led many venetoclax clinical trials and shares a wealth of knowledge about this drug and type of myeloma. Patients with translocation 11;14 have more BCL-2 which acts a little more like a lymphoma compared to other myelomas. Additionally, while t(11;14) patients tend to do a little worse than "standard risk" myeloma patients, plasma cell leukemia patients with the t(11;14) tend to do a little better. Interstingly, the gene produced by this translocation (Cyclin D1) isn't the target - t(11;14) has different biology. Venetoclax is particularly helpful when used with dexamethasone because it increases BCL-2 expression. Doctors can tell immediately if their patients are responding to venetoclax.
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Jonathan Kaufman, MD, is Associate Professor and Associate Vice-Chair for Quality and Safety of the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology at the Emory University School of Medicine. Dr. Kaufman's practice includes treating multiple myeloma and amyloidosis patients. He is also an active clinical and translational researcher in the fields of multiple myeloma, amyloidosis, and bone marrow transplant. His research focus is on the development of optimal treatment regimens and new drug development for patients with plasma cell disorders. Additionally, Dr. Kaufman is a member of the Discovery and Developmental Therapeutics Research Program at Winship Cancer Institute. He also holds memberships with American Society of Clinical Oncology and American Society of Hematology. Dr. Kaufman earned his Medical Degree from the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta. He subsequently completed his Residency in Internal Medicine and his Fellowship in Hematology and Oncology at Emory University.
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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