AIIMS foundation day celebrations: India, US tie up to take on the incurable multiple myeloma

india-us-flag1A group of physicians from India and US have joined hands to undertake research and clinical trials on multiple myeloma, a type of incurable blood cancer.

Dr Shaji K Kumar, a professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, USA, said the forum will try and find out the prevalence of the little-known type of cancer. He said that research on the disease has made rapid strides in terms of preventing its progression through newer forms of drugs and therapy in the recent past.

Kumar, who delivered a lecture during the 63rd Foundation Day celebrations of AIIMS Tuesday, said research in multiple myeloma in India was still limited due to lack of clinical trials. There was also no concrete data on the prevalence of the disease in the country, he added.

“So, a bunch of us in the United States and India have formed a group called ‘Image’, which has been focusing on research and clinical trials on myeloma. We believe the group will play a key role in terms of getting more people trained, making scholarships available,” Kumar told The Indian Express.

Dr Lalit Kumar, professor and head of the Department of Medical Oncology at AIIMS, and Dr Pankaj Malhotra of PGIMER, Chandigarh, are also part of the group, he said.

Kumar delivered his lecture on the topic “Multiple Myeloma: A journey from obscurity to the frontlines of war on cancer”. Union Minister Ashwini Kumar Choubey, AIIMS Director Dr Randeep Guleria, former Dean (Academic) AIIMS J S Guleria were among those present on the occasion.

He explained that the treatment of myeloma has progressed to an extent where the median survival has gone up from two to about 10 years.

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