Multiple Myeloma Coverage from Every Angle

Challenges in Precision Medicine Strategies in Multiple Myeloma

By: Cordi Craig
Posted: Monday, March 4, 2019

A review of the future of precision medicine in multiple myeloma, published in Leukemia, focused on therapeutic resistance mechanisms as well as the current and future use of tumor-profiling technologies. Taylor Harding, PhD, of the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and colleagues challenged the current paradigm and presented evidence to accurately quantify biomarkers at the “genomic, transcriptomic, and proteomic levels.”

“Each patient deserves the most effective, data-driven therapeutic regimen tailored to their individual [multiple myeloma] case,” the authors concluded. “Successfully addressing this clear and obvious need will require bold shifts in the current paradigm of clinical trial design and routine disease management.”

The authors evaluated preclinical studies conducted in the past 2 decades revealing the mechanisms by which malignant plasma cells escape standard therapies and quantifiable biomarkers. The review highlights advances in myeloma pathobiology and the heterogeneity among and within patients with multiple myeloma in the postgenomic era.

Findings suggest there is a need to use precision medicine for the management of patients with multiple myeloma on an individual patient basis. Current tumor-profiling technologies may help identify biomarkers to predict the safety and efficacy of a treatment for a patient’s tumor. The authors commented on the need to adjust clinical trial designs and multiple myeloma management to account for the advancement in precision management strategies.

Finally, the authors questioned, “At what threshold would precision medicine strategies become reliable enough that it will become irresponsible not to incorporate prospective profiling methods into routine clinical practice to give each patient the most informed treatment plan possible?”

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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