22/04/2024 | Press releases

Patient with bone marrow cancer takes part in ‘exciting’ drug trial

A patient with bone marrow cancer was able to join a research study offering the option of alternative drug treatment.

The MajesTEC-9 study is looking at different drug options for multiple myeloma (MM) cancer.

As part of the study, the patient was given a drug called Teclistamab, which is an antibody that binds to the person’s T cells (sometimes referred to as killer cells), and also their myeloma cells to help kill off the cancerous cells.

Wolman in red clinical tunic looking directly at camera smiling
Jo Rosier

Jo Rosier is the research team lead for haematology at Colchester Hospital. She said: “This drug is an exciting step in the treatment options for people with bone marrow cancer.”

Multiple myeloma, also known as myeloma, is a type of bone marrow cancer. Bone marrow is the spongy tissue at the centre of some bones that produces the body’s blood cells.

It’s called multiple myeloma as the cancer often affects several areas of the body, such as the spine, skull, pelvis and ribs.

Patients are eligible for the MajesTEC-9 study if other treatments haven’t worked and they’ve experienced a relapse in their condition.

The study requires intense monitoring for patients as one side effect while being given the treatment can mean the patient’s immune system can go ‘into overdrive’ and experience neurological side effects and acute inflammation.

Jo added: “Our patient required a lot of monitoring because of the side effects, so we made sure we all worked together to provide 24-hour care to monitor the person closely. It was a real group effort to work together to look after our patient so they could be part of this trial.”

The patient, called a participant when taking part in a research study, was the second person to take part in the study in the UK.

Man in glasses looking at camera smiling. Has lanyard
Dr Saja Khalid

Dr Saja Khalid is the principal investigator for the study at the Trust. He said: “We are very proud to be one of a handful of sites in the UK to run the multi-national MajesTEC-9 trial. We were selected because of our excellent track record in running clinical trials at Colchester. This in turn was only possible because of our fantastic Research & Development team.

“Running clinical trials requires a lot of commitment and hard work from all members of the wider team. Often individuals have to go that extra mile to make it possible, as Jo and her team did on this occasion. However, knowing that you are always offering patients the best available treatments and providing the highest standards of care is incredibly rewarding and makes it all worthwhile.”

The study is sponsored by Janssen.

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