University College London has announced the launch of a new National Cancer Research Network observational study (COSMOS) that will recruit patients with MGUS (monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance) and smouldering myeloma to help identify the genetic and immunological changes that cause myeloma.

This ground-breaking study, which is funded by Cancer Research UK and the Medical Research Council, will explore the tumour genomics and immune function of MGUS or smouldering myeloma patients over five years to understand the mechanisms of cancer development and progression from MGUS or smouldering myeloma to myeloma.

Myeloma develops from MGUS and smouldering myeloma, however, not all MGUS or smouldering myeloma patients will develop symptomatic disease. Only 1% of MGUS patients per year and 50% of smouldering myeloma patients (over five years) and will go on to develop myeloma and we don’t know why some patients progress and others don’t. As a result, there is no clear way to identify the patients most at risk of developing myeloma.
This study will provide a deeper understanding of the pathogenesis of myeloma and help risk stratify patients with MGUS and smouldering myeloma so they can be managed accordingly.

Recruitment to the study has started at University College London Hospitals with a plan to open further sites across the country.
Researchers and clinicians wanting to know more or get involved in the study should contact the research team or visit the study website.