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The International Myeloma Foundation Reports Positive Shift In,Treatment Paradigm For Patients

-Second Closure of Multi-Center Trial in 4 Weeks Reinforces Benefits of Using REVLIMID with Low Dose Steroids in Myeloma-

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Calif., May 15, 2007 /PRNewswire/ -- The International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) - supporting research and providing education, advocacy and support for myeloma patients, families, researchers and physicians - today said that for the second time in four weeks a multi-center myeloma trial using REVLIMID(R) has demonstrated positive findings and therefore has been halted early. As a result medical experts are backing the use of new, less toxic and more tolerable treatments for multiple myeloma, the second most common of the blood cancers in the United States.

    -- In April, the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) stopped the use

       of high dose dexamethasone, a steroid commonly used when treating

       patients with REVLIMID, (lenalidomide) an oral medication from Celgene.

       Based on the findings, the data safety monitoring committee recommended

       all patients in the study be moved to a regimen of REVLIMID with low-

       dose dexamethasone, which demonstrated improved survival and was better


    -- Now based on these findings and early analysis of its own data the

       Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG), the largest of the NIH sponsored

       multi-center cooperative group, has brought its trial of high dose

       dexamethasone versus Revlimid plus high dose dexamethasone to an early

       close and also recommended patients be transitioned to a REVLIMID/LDD


    -- Based on these findings, The International Myeloma Foundation's US

       MYELOMA FORUM, a committee of the nation's leading myeloma experts, is

       considering the first large, inter-group trial for newly-diagnosed

       patients using novel agents (either REVLIMID with low-dose

       dexamethasone  or REVLIMD plus other agents such as VELCADE(R) with

       low-dose dexameth
asone) without front-line transplant.

"This is an important series of steps for myeloma patients, as we now have regimens that are more tolerable and at the same time may be more effective," said Brian G.M. Durie, M.D., chairman and co-founder of the IMF and co-chair of the SWOG myeloma committee. "Based on this new clinical evidence, we believe that regimens that include REVLIMID with low dose steroid are an important option for patients with myeloma at all stages of the disease."

Susie Novis, president and co-founder of the IMF, added, "These findings are particularly exciting because the use of low dose dexamethasone was proposed by patients themselves, showing how much can be achieved when we empower patients and listen to what they have to say. In addition, closer cooperation between the two large cooperative groups, SWOG and ECOG, will provide important benefits to patients."

Myeloma, also called multiple myeloma, is a cancer of the bone marrow that affects production of red cells, white cells and stem cells. It affects an estimated 750,000 people worldwide, and in industrialized countries it is being diagnosed in growing numbers and in increasingly younger people.

ABOUT The International Myeloma Foundation

The International Myeloma Foundation is the oldest and largest myeloma organization, reaching more than 135,000 members in 113 countries worldwide. A 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of myeloma patients and their families, the IMF focuses on four key areas: research, education, support and advocacy. To date, the IMF has conducted more than 100 educational seminars worldwide, maintains a world-renowned hotline, and operates Bank on a Cure(R), a unique gene bank to advance myeloma research. The IMF can be reached at 818-487-7455. The global Website is with a companion Website in Spanish at

    CONTACT:                                Media:

    International Myeloma Foundation        Stephen Gendel, BioCom Partners

    800 452-2873                            212 918-4650

CONTACT: The International Myeloma Foundation, +1-800-452-2873, or StephenGendel of BioCom Partners, +1-212-918-4650, for The International MyelomaFoundation

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