The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Presents Study Design for Landmark Trial Focused on Genomic Analysis at the AACR Annual Meeting

CoMMpassâ„  Study to Serve as a Foundation for Personalized Medical Care

Norwalk, CT — April 3, 2012

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) today announced the key study design information and genetic analysis plans for its ongoing, landmark CoMMpassâ„  (Relating Clinical Outcomes in MM to Personal Assessment of Genetic Profile) study during a poster presentation at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Annual Meeting in Chicago, IL.

The first of its kind in multiple myeloma, the CoMMpass study will follow 1,000 newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (ND-MM) patients over a five-year period to understand the molecular and genetic changes underpinning the evolution of the tumor associated with clinical features of the disease with the goal of facilitating future clinical trials and personalized treatment strategies based on the results. The trial is currently underway at 39 sites, and the MMRF continues to expand trial site enrollment.

The presentation by Carolyn Hoban, ScD, MMRF Director of Translational Research, “The MMRF CoMMpassâ„  Study: A Longitudinal Study in Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma Patients to Assess Molecular Profiles, Immunophenotype and Clinical Outcomes,” details the CoMMpass study design, which involves serial collection of paired bone marrow aspirate and peripheral blood throughout the study to comprehensively catalog genomic changes in individual patients. Collection will occur at baseline, suspected complete response and relapse/progression.

The biospecimens will undergo:

  • Whole genome, whole exome and RNA sequencing;
  • Immunophenotyping (study of the protein expressed by cells); and
  • BRAF sequencing (BRAF mutations are present in four percent of patients with multiple myeloma).

The information database generated from the CoMMpass study is expected to fuel key insights into multiple myeloma disease mechanisms, drug response, new drug targets and pathways, biomarkers and molecular classification of multiple myeloma subtypes. The database will be used to determine personalized treatment approaches for existing therapies and inform clinical trials for next generation multiple myeloma therapies for patients with specific genetic markers.

“This study is a potentially transformational research endeavor, which we believe will ultimately shape future multiple myeloma drug development and improve treatment outcomes for patients in the future,” said Louise M. Perkins, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer. “The patients, clinicians and clinical centers participating in this ground-breaking, longitudinal study are making possible the creation of an unprecedented multiple myeloma dataset that will serve as a foundation for personalized medical care for patients with this currently incurable disease. We look forward to the future, in which the information gleamed from this study may have an important impact on patient prognosis.”

Presentation Information
Tuesday, April 3, 2012; Poster Discussion Session: Imaging and Molecular Diagnostics; 1:00-5:00 pm; Abstract # 4561 - McCormick Place West (Hall F), Poster Section 25, Poster Board 21

To view the abstract, visit http://www.abstractsonline.com/Plan/ViewAbstract.aspx?mID=2898&sKey=eb804c63-f71a-4760-a37a-80cb928c62cb&cKey=5aa013c8-0c8f-4933-ae1c-7ffadba3b6e8&mKey=%7b2D8C569E-B72C-4E7D-AB3B-070BEC7EB280%7d. To learn more about the CoMMpass study, visit www.themmrf.org/research-programs/commpass-study/.

About Multiple Myeloma
Multiple myeloma is an incurable blood cancer. The five-year relative survival rate for multiple myeloma is approximately 38 percent, one of the lowest of all cancers. In 2012, more than 21,000 adults in the United States will be diagnosed with multiple myeloma and nearly 11,000 people are predicted to die from the disease.

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, soon after Kathy's diagnosis with multiple myeloma. The mission of the MMRF is to relentlessly pursue innovative means that accelerate the development of next-generation multiple myeloma treatments to extend the lives of patients and lead to a cure. As the world's number-one private funder of multiple myeloma research, the MMRF has raised over $190 million since its inception and directs 90% of total budget to research and related programming. As a result, the MMRF has been awarded Charity Navigator’s coveted four star rating for nine consecutive years, the highest designation for outstanding fiscal responsibility and exceptional efficiency. For more information about the MMRF, please visit www.themmrf.org.


Media Contacts:

Anne Quinn Young, MMRF

Cara Amoroso, Feinstein Kean Healthcare