Unmet Needs in Treatment of Multiple Myeloma

Kathryn Maples, PharmD, BCOP, provides insights regarding unmet needs in treatment for relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma.

Ryan Haumschild, PharmD, MS, MBA: Even with all these innovative treatments available, there are some unmet needs that still need to be identified. Ms Maples, I want to turn over to you. What unmet needs exist in the treatment of multiple myeloma? What are you hopeful will come forward soon?

Kathryn Tyler Maples, PharmD, BCOP: Thank you, Mr Haumschild. Those are great questions, and it’s an exciting time in multiple myeloma. We’ve seen massive growth in this space, but there are still many unmet needs. Myeloma is going to continue to find new resistant pathways, so finding new targets and ways to overcome those resistant pathways is something we’re still looking at. We have new-generation CELMoDs [cereblon E3 ligase modulators] in the pipeline to hopefully overcome polyimide-refractory patients, so we’ll see some growth there.

Another big unmet need is sequencing. We need more data on how to sequence these agents. We have very limited data. We continue to learn the best way to sequence all the agents we have. In myeloma, these agents come to market most often from a monotherapy study, but then they quickly start being used in combination therapy. It’s not only the best sequence but also the best combination.

Lastly, we need to look at the role of MRD [minimal residual disease] negativity. We’re going to talk about that a little more later. We’ve talked about that select high-risk-patient population, but is there a subset of patients who are low risk for whom we could stop therapy if they’re MRD negative 2 years apart? We need to find that niche—a patient who might be able to stop therapy. All those things are areas where we’re still researching unmet needs, but we’re getting closer to a lot of these answers, which is exciting.

Transcript edited for clarity.

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