Multiple myeloma (MM), the second most common hematologic malignancy, is characterized by the clonal expansion of plasma cells. Despite dramatic improvements in patients' survival over the past decade due to advances in therapy exploiting novel molecular targets (immunomodulatory drugs, proteasome inhibitors and monoclonal antibodies), the treatment of relapsed and refractory disease remains challenging. Recent studies confirmed complex, dynamic, and heterogeneous genomic alterations without unifying gene mutations in MM patients. In the current review, we survey recent therapeutic strategies, as well as molecular profiling data on MM, with emphasis on relapsed and refractory cases. A critical appraisal of novel findings and of their potential therapeutic implications will be discussed in detail, along with the author's own experiences/views.
Keywords: molecular profiling; multiple myeloma; plasma cell dyscrasias; treatment.