Clinical Trial of New Targeted Agent a Boon for Patient With AML 

When Youling Sun was diagnosed in Shanghai, China, with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in 2018, he called his son, Conghao, in Boston, for advice. His son’s message was unequivocal: Come to Boston for your treatment.  Today, Sun, a retired office worker from Shanghai, has multiple reasons to be thankful he took that advice — both … Read more

Multiple Myeloma Patient Shines Bright as CAR T-Cell Therapy Outpatient 

As a systems operator who works to help maintain the electrical grid for New York state, Brian Houlihan, 46, is used to getting power to the people. But when the multiple myeloma he has lived with since 2011 stopped responding to chemotherapy, it was Houlihan who needed a recharge.  He got it, through an innovative … Read more

After Outpatient Stem Cell Transplant, MDS Survivor Writes New Chapter 

David Trueblood’s long career in journalism was shaped by new technology, including the rise of digital photography and the impact of online media. So, upon learning in early 2023 that he would need a stem cell transplant due to myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a rare blood disorder impacting his bone marrow, Trueblood appreciated the role innovation … Read more

Patient is First at Dana-Farber to Undergo Outpatient Stem Cell Transplant for Myeloma 

In most ways, Bill Ross’s stem cell transplant for multiple myeloma at Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center (DFBCC) wasn’t out of the ordinary. He received chemotherapy to destroy the tumor cells in his body and then an infusion of his own hematopoietic stem cells, which flocked to his bone marrow and regenerated his blood supply. Over … Read more

A Family Navigates Challenges of Rare Blood Cancer Called Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia

Tom Lomaglio, Jr., learned he had a rare blood cancer called Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia (WM) in 2000. His father, Tom, Sr., had been diagnosed in 2004, and then his sister, Diane, in 2007. They were all referred to Dana-Farber for care. When Lomaglio visited the first time, he met Steven Treon, MD, PhD, director of the … Read more

Graft Sculpting Brings New Approach to Stem Cell Therapy for Highest Risk AML Patients 

A novel hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) method utilizing ‘graft sculpting’ is being tested in a phase 1 clinical trial in patients with refractory acute myeloid leukemia (AML) or myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) who are at the highest risk of relapse after ‘standard’ transplants. In fact, the patients in the trial don’t qualify for a standard … Read more

Dana-Farber Researchers Use Machine Learning to Understand Rare Familial Blood Cancer

Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia (WM) is a blood cancer that is extremely rare, affecting around 1500 people in the US each year. About 20 percent of those cases are considered familial, meaning that many members of the same family also have some form of blood cancer, such as myeloma or lymphoma.  An even smaller group — five … Read more

Stem Cell Transplant and CAR T-cell Therapy: When Are They Used for Lymphoma and Multiple Myeloma?

For many patients with lymphoma or multiple myeloma, a stem cell transplant with their own stem cells (an autologous transplant) or CAR T-cell therapy can extend life significantly or even cure the disease. A variety of factors influence which of these two treatments is recommended, including:  What is the difference between stem cell transplant and … Read more

Study Identifies Markers of Response to CAR T-Cell Therapies

It may be the quintessential question about cancer therapy: why does a particular treatment work well in some patients and not others with the same disease? The question is especially relevant for immunotherapies known as CAR T-cell therapies precisely because they’re so promising. The therapies, which are made by genetically engineering a patient’s own immune … Read more

Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia: What to Know

Drugs known as tyrosine kinase inhibitors, or TKIs, have revolutionized the treatment of chronic myelogenous leukemia (CML), a type of cancer in which the bone marrow produces too many semi-mature white blood cells. Prior to the introduction of these drugs in the early 2000s, standard first-line treatments for the disease reduced CML levels in only … Read more

Refractory Cancer: What It Is and How It Is Treated

What does “refractory” mean medically? The word “refractory” in general use means stubborn or intractable, and in medicine it is specifically applied to disease that does not respond to treatment. Refractory cancer refers to cancer that may be resistant to initial therapy or becomes resistant during treatment. “We would consider disease refractory if doesn’t respond … Read more

Study Explores Inequities in Acute Leukemia Clinical Trial Participation

While some racial and ethnic groups have been underrepresented in clinical trials of therapies for lung cancer, breast cancer and other malignancies, researchers speculated that the situation might be different for adult leukemia trials. The unique features of the disease — the speed with which it needs to be treated after diagnosis, the delivery of … Read more