Sep. 20, 2011 The John Theurer Cancer Center at Hackensack University Medical Center is one of the first four clinical sites enrolling patients in a landmark study designed to uncover the molecular segments and variations of multiple myeloma. The study is the centerpiece of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation's (MMRF) Personalized Medicine Initiative, CoMMpass (Relating Clinical Outcomes in MM to Personal Assessment of Genetic Profile), aimed to accelerate translational research into therapeutic breakthroughs for patients.
"Over the past decade the multiple myeloma community has made significant progress developing therapies that extend survival and improve quality of life," said David S. Siegel, M.D., Ph.D., Chief, Multiple Myeloma, John Theurer Cancer Center and a Principal Investigator of the study, "This study is designed to build upon our most recent discovery -- the completion of the first genomic portrait of multiple myeloma. We hope to gain a greater understanding of the mechanisms of the disease to develop personalized treatments for our patients."
The study will enroll at least 1,000 newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patients who have not yet initiated therapy for their disease. Researchers will track patients from initial diagnosis through their course of treatment, over a minimum of 5 years, and conduct sequential tissue sampling to identify how a patient's molecular profile may affect his or her clinical progression and individual response to treatment.
"The John Theurer Cancer Center is committed to participating in clinical trials that may contribute to the development of more targeted treatments for patients," said Andrew L. Pecora, M.D., F.A.C.P., C.P.E., Chief Innovations Officer and Professor and Vice President of Cancer Services, John Theurer Cancer Center. "We are pleased to collaborate with the MMRF on this important research initiative."
The MMRF plans to expand the network of academic and community cancer centers enrolling patients for the study. The current participating sites also include Virginia Cancer Specialists in Fairfax, Virginia; Waverly Hematology Oncology in Cary, NC; and Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City. For more information about this clinical trial at the John Theurer Cancer Center, please call 201-996-5900.
About Multiple Myeloma
Multiple myeloma is the second most common blood cancer. Multiple myeloma cannot be cured, but new treatments continue to be evaluated in research studies, and substantial improvements in treatment have been made over the past few years, allowing many individuals to live longer, healthier lives with the disease.
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