Racial differences in treatment and outcomes in multiple myeloma: a multiple myeloma research foundation analysis

Blood Cancer J. 2020 Aug 7;10(8):80. doi: 10.1038/s41408-020-00347-6.


Findings on racial differences in survival in multiple myeloma (MM) have been inconclusive. We assessed differences in outcomes between White and Black individuals among 639 newly diagnosed MM patients in the MM Research Foundation CoMMpass registry with baseline cytogenetic data. Survival curves were constructed using the Kaplan-Meier method. Hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals were derived from Cox proportional hazard regression models. Age, gender, and stage were similar between Whites (n = 526) and Blacks (n = 113). Blacks had inferior overall survival (OS) compared with Whites and were less likely to receive triplet therapies or frontline autologous stem cell transplant (ASCT). The following factors were significantly associated with inferior OS in multivariate analysis: higher international staging system (ISS) score, ≥1 or ≥2 high-risk cytogenetic abnormalities (HRCA), high-risk gene expression profile (GEP), and lack of ASCT. Multivariate analysis in the Black subset found that only lack of ASCT was significantly associated with inferior OS. The receipt of both triplet induction and ASCT only partly abrogated the effect of race on survival. HRCA did not track with survival in Blacks, emphasizing the need for race-specific risk prognostication schema to guide optimal MM therapy.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • African Continental Ancestry Group / genetics
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Chromosome Aberrations
  • European Continental Ancestry Group / genetics
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Kaplan-Meier Estimate
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multiple Myeloma / epidemiology*
  • Multiple Myeloma / genetics
  • Multiple Myeloma / therapy*
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prospective Studies
  • Stem Cell Transplantation
  • Transplantation, Autologous
  • Treatment Outcome