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Screening Strategies in Individuals at Risk of Developing Multiple Myeloma

By: Joseph Fanelli
Posted: Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Screening individuals who are at high risk of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) may reduce the chance of disease progression and prevalence of multiple myeloma, according to findings published in JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics. The study, led by Philipp Altrock, PhD, of the Department of Integrated Mathematical Oncology at the Moffitt Cancer Center, concluded that the focus should be on high-risk individuals, especially those with a family history of multiple myeloma.

“Regular screening of MGUS candidates should start as early as possible, with biannual follow-up, and focus on high-risk individuals, especially with a family history of multiple myeloma or in groups with a strong indication of MGUS progression,” concluded Dr. Altrock and colleagues stated in a Moffitt press release.

For the study, researchers used an individual-based computational modeling of MGUS incidence and progression. By establishing high-risk and low-risk individuals, researchers then designed their model to predict the progression of MGUS to multiple myeloma, the changes in MGUS and multiple myeloma prevalence, and the annual follow-up mortality due to disease.

They found that the prevalence of multiple myeloma could be reduced by 19% in individuals who begin screening at age 55 and had follow-up screening every 6 years. That same reduction was found in the prevalence for individuals who began screening at age 65 and had follow-up screening every 2 years. In addition, Dr. Altrock and colleagues discovered that a 40% progression risk reduction per patient with MGUS per year would reduce multiple myeloma–specific mortality by 40%.


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