PET/CT Scanning Comes of Age: New IMWG Guidelines Published

New IMWG guidelines for PET/CT scanning have been published inThe Lancet Oncology. In his blog this week, IMF Chairman Dr. Brian Durie congratulates Dr. Michele Cavo and his team for their report on this extremely accurate imaging technique, used to establish a diagnosis and to monitor throughout the course of the disease. “The new IMWG guidelines provide a comprehensive review of the current role and optimal uses of FDG PET/ CT scanning,” he writes.

iStop MM® gets off to a fast start

The IMF team just returned from the exciting iStopMM kickoff meeting held September 26-27th at the deCode Genetics facility at the University of Iceland in Reykjavik. A major project funded by the IMF’s Black Swan Research Initiative, iStopMM (Iceland Screens Treats or Prevents Multiple Myeloma) will examine blood samples from approximately 140,000 adults over age 40 in Iceland for the earliest signs of myeloma. The goal of this innovative and ambitious effort, as I have written about in previous blogs here and here, is to stop myeloma before it develops into full-blown disease.

Four Important Ways Iceland’s iStopMM Research Project Will Help Myeloma Patients Globally

The iStopMM research project is about to get started in Iceland. It is supported through the IMF’s Black Swan Research Initiative® and literally will include Screening, Treating OPreventing myeloma. Beginning in October 2016, approximately 140,000 people over 40 in Iceland will be screened with SPEP (serum protein electrophoresis), UPEP (urine protein electrophoresis), and Freelite tests to see if they have MGUS (monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance), smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM), or full-blown multiple myeloma (MM). If they have MGUS or SMM, they will be initially monitored. If they have myeloma, they will be treated.

Have we found the cause of myeloma? Not really!

A report this week issued by Yale News announced “Yale researchers discover underlying cause of myeloma,” citing an article published today in the New England Journal of Medicine entitled, “Clonal Immunoglobulin against Lysolipids in the Origin of Myeloma.” This is an article about what triggers the development of MGUS and myeloma in patients with a rare metabolic disease called Gaucher’s disease. The article is thus about how myeloma may be caused in a rare and unusual circumstance – not the average case of myeloma.

Huge interest in toxic chemicals triggered by last week's blog: follow up notes

Last week's blog about the link between Agent Orange and the likelihood of developing MGUS and myeloma clearly struck an emotional chord: many are concerned especially about the broader implications. Were others exposed? Are many people exposed to toxic chemicals? Is that what is really causing MGUS and myeloma? Are other chemicals producing similar toxic effects? How long ago can the exposure occur? Can early exposure pose a lingering threat?

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