Press release

Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Launches Leading-edge Immune Atlas Initiative

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The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) announced today that it is piloting a new precision medicine research initiative called the Immune Atlas. The objectives of this Immune Atlas pilot are to develop a ‘gold standard’ immune profiling platform for myeloma research studies and to generate robust immune data that is fundamental to the delivery of precision medicine. The Immune Atlas is a critical part of the organization’s bold three-year plan, which focuses, in part, on generating robust immune data to advance precision immuno-oncology efforts.

“Immunotherapy has transformed outcomes for patients with many kinds of cancers that previously had few effective options,” said the MMRF President and Chief Executive Officer Paul Giusti. “Progress in immunotherapy in myeloma has been gradual because of the complexity of the disease and a fragmented research effort. As the leader in precision medicine, we are now seeking to accelerate immune agents into the clinic for myeloma patients and ensure that each patient receives treatment that is specific for their immune profile.”

The MMRF has partnered with leading academic centers that will employ cutting edge analytical technologies to comprehensively characterize the immune repertoire and activity of key immune cell populations in myeloma patients. The five centers involved in the pilot are from the Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC): Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Emory University, Mayo Clinic Rochester, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and Washington University.

“The great strength of the MMRF is the ability to bring partners together to collaborate on efforts that advance cures for myeloma patients,” said the MMRF Chief Scientific Officer Daniel Auclair, PhD. “We are so fortunate to have these five best-in-class institutions as members of our Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC), who can bring cutting-edge scientific analysis to bear on the most pressing needs of our patients. Once this immune profiling platform is validated, it can be rolled out to bring the promise of precision immunotherapy to the entire myeloma community.”

About Multiple Myeloma

Multiple myeloma (MM) is a cancer of the plasma cell. It is the second most common blood cancer. An estimated 30,770 adults (16,400 men and 14,730 women) in the United States will be diagnosed with MM in 2019 and an estimated 12,770 people are predicted to die from the disease. The five-year survival rate for MM is approximately 47%, versus 31% in 1999.

About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)

A pioneer in precision medicine, the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) seeks to find a cure for all multiple myeloma patients by relentlessly pursuing innovations that accelerate the development of precision treatments for cancer. Founded in 1998 by Kathy Giusti, a multiple myeloma patient, and her twin sister Karen Andrews as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the MMRF has created the business model around cancer—from data to analytics to the clinic. The MMRF identifies barriers and then finds the solutions to overcome them, bringing in the best partners and aligning incentives in the industry to drive better outcomes for patients. Since its inception, the organization has collected thousands of samples and tissues, opened nearly 100 trials, helped bring 10 FDA-approved therapies to market, and built CoMMpass, the single largest genomic dataset for any cancer. Today, the MMRF is building on its legacy in genomics and is expanding into immune-oncology, as the combination of these two fields will be critical to making precision medicine possible for all patients. The MMRF has raised nearly $500 million and directs nearly 90% of the total funds to research and related programs. To learn more, visit

About the Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC)

The Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC) is a 509 (a) (3) non-profit organization that integrates leading academic institutions to accelerate drug development in multiple myeloma. It is led from the MMRC offices in Norwalk, Conn., and comprises 25 member institutions: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Beth Israel Deaconess, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Mayo Clinic (Jacksonville, Rochester and Scottsdale), Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer Center at Dallas, Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, City of Hope, Emory University’s Winship Cancer Institute, Levine Cancer Institute, The John Theurer Cancer Center at Hackensack University Medical Center, Memorial Sloan Kettering, Mount Sinai Icahn School of Medicine, Ohio State University, Sarah Cannon Research Institute, University Health Network (Princess Margaret Hospital), University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, University of Chicago, University of Michigan, UT Southwestern, Virginia Cancer Specialists and Washington University in St. Louis.