Myeloma specialists and myeloma patients alike want to know which treatment will work best before they are taken. Dr. Keith Stewart and colleagues from the Mayo Clinic Scottsdale have developed a new test using a "direct-to-drug" screening that helps determine how certain myeloma cells (with specific biomarkers and pretreatment histories) will react to different myeloma therapies. The new test is flexible enough to accommodate new drugs as they become FDA approved and is a way to avoid using drugs that won't provide much impact. This flexibility is required with the rapidly changing environment in myeloma.
Personalized care in myeloma is especially tricky because of the differences in each myeloma patients' cells. A single patient can have an average of 5 different "types" of myeloma at diagnosis and those types can evolve over time. This is called heterogeneity. Add to that the large number of potential treatment combinations, and it becomes an art and a science to treat myeloma patients. This new test will help provide much needed guidance. Learn more about this fascinating topic with Dr. Stewart.
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