February 2016, Volume 2, Issue 2

February 2016

Volume 2, Issue 2

This issue features a look at young blood versus old blood when it comes to red blood cell transfusions, as well as additional coverage from the 2015 ASH Annual Meeting and a physician debate on optimal timing of transplant in myeloma.

Table of Contents

February 2016

The “Theys” Have It – Or Does He or She?

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Recently, in a decision that was heralded by some as transformative, by others as a “win for gender neutrality,” and by presumably the majority...

Don’t Fear the Filter

Monday, February 1st, 2016
To the Editor: As an interventional radiologist who specializes in acute and chronic deep-vein thrombosis (DVT), superficial venous disease, and complex filter removal, I applaud...

The Debate on IVC Filters

Monday, February 1st, 2016
To The Editor: I offer my views in response to the debate on IVC filters. Numerous papers have been published with varying degrees of scientific...

February 2016

The ASH Medical Educators Institute, New Podcasts, and more

Monday, February 1st, 2016
ASH’s new Medical Educators Institute (MEI) provides hematologists who are new to medical education careers a “boot camp” in teaching techniques, fundamentals of medical education...

American Cancer Society Awards Medals of Honor, New Promotions, and more

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Francis Giles Appointed Chief of Hematology/Oncology at Feinberg School of Medicine Francis Giles, MD, has been appointed chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology in the...

February 2016

Pulling Back the Curtain: Mary Horowitz, MD, MS

Monday, February 1st, 2016
What was your first job? Being the oldest of seven children, I had a variety of jobs when I was younger, but the first time...

Bad Blood: Is the Debate Over Stored Red Blood Cells Still Relevant?

Monday, February 1st, 2016
With age comes wisdom, the saying goes, unless we are talking about red blood cells (RBCs). Then with age comes the theoretical risk of...
Karl Theil, MD, at a 1929 Knabe Ampico B player grand piano.

The Player Piano Man: Karl Theil, MD

Monday, February 1st, 2016
  When did you start collecting pianos? What drew you to it? Collecting player pianos dates back to my high school years, when my family inherited...

Optimal Timing of Transplant in Myeloma

Monday, February 1st, 2016
New therapeutic options for the treatment of multiple myeloma are capable of achieving sustained and deep remissions, calling into question the role of upfront...

February 2016

Is there a role for transplant in aplastic anemia?

Monday, February 1st, 2016
This month, Marcie Riches, MD, MS, answers a question about stem cell transplantation in a patient who presents with aplastic anemia and PNH.A 28-year-old...

Understanding von Willebrand Disease

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Von Willebrand disease (vWD) is a genetic bleeding disorder caused by a deficient or defective von Willebrand factor (vWF). vWF is a clotting protein...

February 2016

New Biosensor Provides Complete Blood Cell Count Test Results in Minutes

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have developed a new biosensor based on a microfluidic biochip that can count blood cells electrically...

FDA Revises Blood Donation Policy for Gay Men

Monday, February 1st, 2016
After a 32-year ban, the U.S. FDA has updated its final guidance on blood donation policies for gay men. Men who have sex with...

Medicare Launches New Tool to Analyze High-Cost Drugs

Monday, February 1st, 2016
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has launched its online “Medicare Drug Spending Dashboard” in an effort to increase transparency and address...
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Study Provides New Molecular Insight into the Increased Risk of VTE in African Americans

Monday, February 1st, 2016
African Americans are at a dramatically higher risk for developing venous thromboembolism (VTE), with a 30- to 60-percent higher risk than other ethnicities. The...

NIH Releases First Agency-Wide Strategic Plan to Enhance Health-Care Research and Technology

Monday, February 1st, 2016
The NIH has released a five-year agency-wide strategic plan for expanding health-care research and technology, with specific goals to further explore HIV and influenza...

Congress Approves Largest NIH Budget Increase in 12 Years

Monday, February 1st, 2016
With the recently approved 2016 fiscal year budget, the U.S. Congress will increase its funding to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to $32.1...

U.S. FDA Approves First Chemotherapy Overdose Reversal Agent

Monday, February 1st, 2016
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved uridine triacetate for the emergency treatment of adults or children with cancer who receive an...
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E-Consultations: What Is the Value in Hematologic Care?

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Electronic consultation (e-Consult), in which a consultant provides medical recommendations by reviewing a patient’s electronic medical record (EMR), offers an alternative to face-to-face health...
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Ibrutinib Resistance Common in Patients with MCL, Highlighting Need for Post-Ibrutinib Options

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Although previous research has shown that ibrutinib leads to longer progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) in patients with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL),...
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BCR-ABL Transcript Type Predicts Response and Survival Among Patients with CML

Monday, February 1st, 2016
The presence of one or both of the most common BCR-ABL transcripts in patients with chronic-phase chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), e13a2 and e14a2, is...
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Study Finds GATA2 Deficiency Predisposes Children to MDS

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Germline GATA2 mutations account for 15 percent of advanced and 7 percent of primary cases of myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) in pediatric patients, but their...

Assessing ADAMTS13 Assays in Thrombotic Microangiopathies

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Two registry-based studies recently published in the British Journal of Haemotology focused on the role of ADAMTS13 measurements in thrombotic microangiopathies (TMAs) in confirming...
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Long-Acting Recombinant Fusion Protein rIX-FP Is Safe, Effective for Patients with Hemophilia B

Monday, February 1st, 2016
The recombinant fusion protein linking coagulation factor IX with albumin (rIX-FP) is a safe and effective treatment for patients with hemophilia B, according to...

Study Provides More Support for Hydroxyurea Use in Patients With Sickle Cell Disease

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Adults with sickle cell disease (SCD) should be treated with the maximum tolerated dose of hydroxyurea to reduce the risk of organ damage over...

CAR T Cells in AML, Preventing VTE in Cancer Patients, and more

Monday, February 1st, 2016
LEUKEMIA David Steensma, MD Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Phase 1b Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) Study with ABT-199 + Decitabine or Azacitidine (Chemo Combo) (NCT02203773) Study Design: Phase Ib,...

Andexanet Alfa Reverses Anticoagulant Activity of Apixaban, Rivaroxaban

Monday, February 1st, 2016
The investigational drug andexanet alfa is a reversal agent designed to neutralize the anticoagulant effects of both direct and indirect factor Xa inhibitors. With...

February 2016

Choosing Wisely Across the Internal Medicine Spectrum: Which Recommendations Should Hematologists Pay Attention To?

Monday, February 1st, 2016
In collaboration with the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation’s Choosing Wisely® campaign, ASH released a list of hematology-related tests and procedures to...

From Substance to Symbol: The Epic Story of Blood

Monday, February 1st, 2016
This year, the American Society of Hematology’s flagship publication, Blood, celebrates its 70th anniversary. At the 2015 ASH Annual Meeting, attendees were invited to...

Multiple Myeloma Patients Experience Heavy Financial Burden, High Financial Toxicity

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Though advances in the treatment of multiple myeloma (MM) have led to longer survival for MM patients, they have also resulted in increasingly complex...

Patients with AML Experience Significant Symptom Burden, Declining Quality of Life Following Induction Therapy

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Remission induction therapy for patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) is intensive, necessitating a four-to-six-week hospitalization. In a study examining whether the treatment also...

Benefits Could Outweigh Risks When Restarting Oral Anticoagulants in Patients with Major Bleeding

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Patients who have experienced major bleeding while taking direct oral anticoagulants (DOAC) had better survival rates and better outcomes if oral anticoagulation was restarted,...

Using Molecular Mutations in Myelodysplastic Syndromes to Guide Treatment

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Two studies presented at the 2015 ASH Annual Meeting highlighted efforts by researchers to move beyond current risk stratification models for patients with myelodysplastic...

New Framework Combines Genomic and Clinical Data to Predict Outcomes for Patients with AML

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Using both genomic and clinical data, researchers have developed a new prognostic framework to predict outcomes, including mortality, in patients with acute myeloid leukemia...

Long Live the Platelets: Does Extended Platelet Survival Affect Outcomes?

Monday, February 1st, 2016
Inhibiting normal apoptosis leads to extended platelet survival, but these longer-living or “exhausted” platelets may have compromised hemostatic efficacy, according to research presented by...

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