Saturday March 11, 2017: Mary DeRome – “MMRF’s Precision Medicine Initiative”

For this meeting we welcome Mary DeRome, Director of Medical Communications and Education at the MMRF (Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation), who will discuss their Precision Medicine Initiative, the CoMMpass Study which maps patients’ genomic profiles to clinical outcomes, and the CoMMunity Gateway program which enables patients to get news about treatment and connect with others with myeloma. If you can, please bring a dessert to share.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus).

The “official” start time for the meeting is 1:30, but feel free to come as early as 1:00 since we gather early and chat before meetings. This is an especially good opportunity for newcomers to meet current members and exchange information.

There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

Saturday February 11, 2017: Adam D. Cohen, MD – “Highlights from ASH 2016”

This month’s program will be a presentation of highlights about Multiple Myeloma research and treatment from the recent annual ASH (American of Society of Hematology) meeting. Our speaker will be  Adam D. Cohen, MD, Assistant Professor and Director of Myeloma Immunotherapy at the Abramson Cancer Center of the U of Pennsylvania. He will also provide a general overview of how immunotherapy is being used in treating myeloma. Lunch will be provided by Takeda Pharmaceuticals.

Dr. Cohen’s slides

The “official” start time for the meeting is 1:30, but feel free to come as early as 1:00 since we gather early and chat before meetings. This is an especially good opportunity for newcomers to meet current members and exchange information.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus).

There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

PMMNG Miles For Myeloma Funds Research Grant through the IMF

Recently we were notified by Suzanne Battaglia at the International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) that money that we donated to the IMF through our Miles for Myeloma 5K fundraiser has been awarded as a grant to Neelam Bhardwaj, Ph.D., a multiple myeloma researcher in Salt Lake City, UT. Dr. Bhardwaj is in the Hematology / Oncology department at Huntsman Cancer Institute / University of Utah.

Here is information about his research:

Project Title: “Generation and validation of a monoclonal antibody against VISTA for the immunomodulatory therapy of multiple myeloma”
Abstract (layman): Multiple Myeloma (MM) is a blood cancer, which in most cases still remains incurable. The immune system can play an important role in controlling tumor growth and even lead to cures. In particular, the use of checkpoint inhibitors has shown remarkable clinical results for patients with solid tumors by improving the anti-tumor response of the patients’ own T cells. We propose to develop a novel checkpoint inhibitor antibody targeting VISTA, an immunosuppressive protein overexpressed in patients with MM. We will use state-of-the-art technology to develop this antibody and validate its therapeutic potential for the treatment of MM.

Saturday January 14, 2017: Jessica Perrella, MSW – “Emotional and Sexual Effects of Multiple Myeloma Treatments”

Hello PMMNG Friends,

At our January program, Jessica Perrella, MSW, will address the emotional and sexual effects of cancer treatments, specifically for people with multiple myeloma. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions related to sexuality, intimacy, relationships and family dynamics. Jessica is the Director of New Projects and Initiatives at the Cancer Support Community of Philadelphia where she also provides emotional support and educational programs for individuals and families affected by cancer.

Slides from Jessica’s presentation

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus). There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

Newcomers are especially welcome.

Saturday December 10, 2016 – Our Annual Holiday Celebration

Hello PMMNG Friends,

The December 10th meeting will be our annual holiday celebration – a time to reflect on the past year and to share hopes and plans for 2017. Everyone will receive a star for their name badge to indicate another year of living with a Myeloma diagnosis. If you can, please bring an appetizer, finger food or dessert to share and enjoy

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus). There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

Newcomers are especially welcome.

PMMNG Donates to the MMRF

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) held its The MMRF Team for Cures: Philadelphia 5K Walk/Run 2016 on Saturday November 12, 2016. At the event, PMMNG members were pleased to present the MMRF with a donation of $30,000, raised largely during our annual Miles for Myeloma 5K Run/Walk fundraiser this spring.

Here are a couple of photos from Saturday’s MMRF event. In the first photo are PMMNG members Phil Falkowitz and Cindy Chimilewski , along with Dr. Edward Stadtmauer, from Abramson Cancer Center at UPenn, who was the Honorary Race Chair.

_MG_4527 _MG_4569

Late Fall 2016 Upcoming Events

November 17, 2016 1:00 pm EST. Myeloma Crowd Radio – “Personalized Medicine in Myeloma” with Craig Cole, MD, University of Michigan Call In by Phone to Listen Live: (347) 637-2631 or Listen Live Via Computer

November 17th 7:00 pm EST – IMF teleconference “What to look for in this year’s meeting of the world’s best researchers on MM at the American Society for Hematology annual conference” with Dr. Brian Durie. Registration required

November 18thPenn Blood Cancer Conference Hilton Hotel City Avenue, 4200 City Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19131 Registration required

Saturday November 12, 2016: “From Uninsured to Underinsured: Strategies to Improve Financial Well-Being During and After Cancer Treatment” by Christina Bach

At our November meeting, Christina Bach, MBE, MSW, LCSW, will be speaking on the topic “From Uninsured to Underinsured: Strategies to Improve Financial Well-Being During and After Cancer Treatment”. In addition to addressing health insurance concerns, she will provide information about the new oral parity law that was recently passed in PA. Christina, a long-time oncology social worker, is currently the Educational Content Specialist and Psychosocial Content Editor for Oncolink, an online resource for cancer information.

Slides from Christina’s presentation

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus). There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

Newcomers are especially welcome.

Saturday October 8, 2016: Patient and Caregiver Split

For the October meeting, we will be splitting into Patient and Caregiver groups after the general announcements. Each group will have a facilitator and will be an opportunity for questions, discussions and information-sharing with others who are in a similar situation.

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus). There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street.

Newcomers are especially welcome.

Fall 2016 Upcoming Events

September: Blood Cancer Awareness Month

Help the MMRF raise funds for #myeloma research just by uploading a photo!

Each time you upload a photo to the MMRF through the Donate A Photo app Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 to help us advance research! You can donate one photo per day until the donation period ends on September 30th, or until we reach the maximum donation amount.
Donate a Photo – a free charity app by Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc.

September 20: Ninlaro Educational Program

Learn about Ninlaro, a new oral therapy for patients who have received at least one prior treatment for multiple myeloma

Renaissance Allentown Hotel, 12 North 17th St., Allentown, PA

For more info or to register call 844-247-1641

September 22: FREE “Living Well with Myeloma” teleconference on CAR T-Cell Therapy

For more info or to register: http://bit.ly/2cphZzV

October 1: MMRF Myeloma Patient Summit

John Theurer Cancer Center at HUMC

32 Second Street

Hackensack, NJ 07601

For more info of to register: http://bit.ly/2cAu5RA

October 8: PMMNG October Meeting

Patient & Caregivwe Split

PMMNG meetings are held the second Saturday of every month (except August), 1:30 – 3:30 PM, at the Ralston House, 3615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA (near the University of Pennsylvania campus). There is free parking behind the building, accessible from Ludlow Street

October 15: MyelomaCrowd Patient Meeting

Mt. Washington Conference Center

5801 Smith Avenue

Baltimore, MD 21209

For info and to register: http://buff.ly/2bowfTq

November 14: MMRF 5K in Philadelphia

4231 Avenue of the Republic, Memorial Hall – Fairmont Park

For more info or to register: https://www.themmrf.org/team-events/philadelphia-2016/

Takeda’s Music to Fight Myeloma -

Making a difference never sounded so good! Music2FightMyeloma raises funds & awareness. Join bit.ly/2bVHrb1

Upcoming TweetChats 

4:00-5:00 PM ET #mmsm hashtag

9/28 @Amyloid_Planet #Amyloidosis

10/26 @szumani Daratumumab

11/2 @MyelomaMD ASCENT SMM

11/16 @MyelomaMD IMWG response & MRD