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NCCN Announces Funding for Research on Multiple Myeloma Treatment

The NCCN Oncology Research Program (ORP) announced grants awarded to support clinical studies that will evaluate the efficacy and safety of elranatamab in the treatment of multiple myeloma. Funding will be provided through support from Pfizer Global Medical Grants.

“The aim of this initiative is to fund studies that will expand the growing body of evidence on the use of elranatamab to help advance treatment of patients with multiple myeloma,” explained Crystal S. Denlinger, MD, Chief Executive Officer, NCCN.

The projects selected for approval are:

  • • David Avigan, MD, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

    • ○ NCCN Pfizer Investigator–Sponsored Research Project to Evaluate the Effectiveness of a Personalized Cancer Vaccine in Conjunction With Elranatamab in the Treatment of Multiple Myeloma

  • • Ah-Reum Jeong, MD, UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center

    • ○ Phase II MRD Adapted Study of Elranatamab in Relapsed/Refractory Multiple Myeloma

  • • Michael Slade, MD, Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine

    • ○ Measurable Residual Disease–Guided Post-Transplant Elranatamab Maintenance Using Peripheral Blood Clonotypic Mass Spectrometry

  • • Attaya Suvannasankha, MD, Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Comprehensive Cancer Center and Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Administration Medical Center

    • ○ Response-Guided Treatment Discontinuation of Elranatamab in Frail/Elderly Patients

Proposals were peer reviewed by a scientific review committee, which consisted of leading expert oncologists from NCCN Member Institutions. The selected projects are set to be completed within 5 years. Approximately $5 million in funding will be provided across all grants.

The NCCN ORP fosters innovation and knowledge discovery that improve the lives of people with cancer and supports preclinical, translational, and clinical research and quality improvement projects in oncology at NCCN Member Institutions. For more information, visit NCCN.org/orp.

International Collaboration to Improve Cancer Care in Sub-Saharan Africa Updates Resources for Sixth Year

NCCN is celebrating 6 years of working alongside the African Cancer Coalition (ACC), the American Cancer Society (ACS), and the Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), as part of Allied Against Cancer. The collaboration was formed to support and empower the Sub-Saharan African oncology community to advance health system capacity, deliver high-quality cancer care, and improve access for all patients.

Allied Against Cancer’s work involves several initiatives, including the development of NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa. These evidence-based recommendations are based on in-region expert consensus on context-appropriate approaches for treating nearly all adult cancers across more than a dozen countries throughout the region. NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa are available free-of-charge at NCCN.org/harmonized or via the Virtual Library of NCCN Guidelines App.

“The oncology community in Sub-Saharan Africa is working with NCCN to enhance the capacity of our professionals to meet the challenge of cancer care in Sub-Saharan Africa and cases that are increasing at a significant rate,” said Professor Isaac Adewole, Former Nigerian Minister of Health, Co-Chair of ACC. “Allied Against Cancer activities and tools like the NCCN Harmonized Guidelines help us to ensure cancer care can be provided according to the latest research, based on all available resources. Standardizing care according to established best practices allows us to better anticipate what our needs will be, including medication, making it easier to negotiate prices and increase necessary infrastructure as well as participate in clinical trials and international conferences or meetings.”

The first NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa debuted in November 2017, during the biennial African Organisation for Research and Training in Cancer (AORTIC) International Conference on Cancer in Africa held in Kigali, Rwanda.

Since then, the library has grown to 54 NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa, providing best practice cancer treatment recommendations for more than 92% of all adult cancer incidence in the region.

“We are honored to be able to work alongside these dedicated local experts across the African oncology community and our Allied Against Cancer collaborators,” said Crystal S. Denlinger, MD, Chief Executive Officer, NCCN. “We hope efforts such as this will continue to promote improvements in care that are both pragmatic and aspirational around the world while supporting our oncology colleagues in their provision of optimal cancer care.”

In 2023 alone, the group published 35 updated guidelines. During the 14th AORTIC International Conference on Cancer in Africa held in Dakar, Senegal, in late 2023, oncologists from the region presented on implementation of the harmonized guidelines within their countries, with support from ACS.

“We were fortunate to be able to expand and update the harmonized guidelines this year to continue making progress against the accelerating burden of cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Shanthi Sivendran, MD, MSCR, MBA, Senior Vice President, Cancer Care Support, ACS. “Our aim is to make sure oncologists and patients across the Sub-Saharan region have access to the tools they need to provide the best care possible while often facing staffing and equipment shortages.”

The library of NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa is endorsed by the Federal Ministries of Health and leading cancer centers in Ethiopia, Liberia, Malawi, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia, representing 44% of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Learn more about Allied Against Cancer’s collaborative work to improve cancer care in Sub-Saharan Africa at alliedagainstcancer.org.

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