MMRF Applauds FDA Approval of Revlimid?? for Multiple Myeloma

NORWALK, CONN — June 23, 2006
New Oral Therapy Represents Important Step Forward in the Treatment of Incurable Blood Cancer

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) today applauds the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of REVLIMID® (lenalidomide) for the treatment of relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma. Celgene’s development of both REVLIMID and THALOMID® (thalidomide), as well as other therapies in their pipeline, demonstrate an ongoing commitment to combating the uniformly fatal disease that has few treatment options available.

"The FDA approval of REVLIMID represents an important step forward for the treatment of multiple myeloma,” said Kathy Giusti, who is both the founder and CEO of the MMRF, and a multiple myeloma patient. “We are proud to have been a partner with Celgene in the development of REVLIMID, and we thank them for their efforts on behalf of patients who need new therapies to overcome this disease. This milestone signifies the way new treatment options can augment current therapies, extend lives, and ultimately bring us closer to a cure."

As a partner with Celgene, the MMRF worked to educate and raise awareness of REVLIMID among patients and professionals in the multiple myeloma community and provided funding in support of REVLIMID research. MMRF assistance accelerated accrual to the pivotal REVLIMID clinical trials by directing thousands of individuals to the clinical trials via the MMRF's Clinical Trials Monitor (CTM) program. Providing $3.5 million in related research funding to support REVLIMID, the MMRF also worked closely with Celgene and research centers to improve understanding of the drug’s use in combination with other therapies for multiple myeloma.

About Multiple Myeloma

Multiple myeloma, an incurable cancer of the plasma cell, is the second most common hematologic (blood) cancer, representing one percent of all cancer diagnoses and two percent of all cancer deaths. Despite recent advances in treating myeloma, the five-year survival rate for multiple myeloma is only 32 percent, one of the lowest of all cancers. Approximately 50,000 people in the United States are living with multiple myeloma and an estimated 16,000 new cases are diagnosed each year.


REVLIMID is a member of a proprietary group of novel immunomodulatory drugs, or IMiDs.® It is also approved by the FDA for treatment of patients with transfusion-dependent anemia due to low- or intermediate-1-risk myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) associated with a deletion 5q cytogenetic abnormality with or without additional cytogenetic abnormalities.

About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) was established in 1998 as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization by twin sisters Karen Andrews and Kathy Giusti, a newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patient, with the unique mission of accelerating the search for a cure for multiple myeloma. As the world's number one funder of myeloma research, the MMRF has raised more than $56 million to fund more than 130 research grants at more than 70 research institutions around the globe. Currently, the MMRF is funding more than 30 new compounds and approaches -- in pre-clinical testing and Phase I, II and III clinical trials -- that show promise in treating patients at all stages of the disease. For more information about the MMRF, please visit www.themmrf.org.