Skip to nav Skip to content

Brandon Blue, M.D., is working to fight multiple myeloma, a deadly blood cancer that disproportionately affects Black men and women. But it’s a difficult challenge because multiple myeloma has no cure. And unlike many other cancers, this one has no telltale signs. By the time people realize they have multiple myeloma, it’s often highly advanced, leading to bone density loss, kidney failure and chronic pain.

To overcome this obstacle, Blue and Moffitt Cancer Center are planning a new strategy to fight multiple myeloma before it becomes cancer.

Moffitt is preparing to create a multiple myeloma precursor clinic. The clinic will offer treatment for people with a condition called Monoclonal Gammopathy of Undetermined Significance (MGUS), a precursor condition that can lead to multiple myeloma. By detecting and treating people with MGUS and other precursor conditions, doctors can delay or prevent some of the serious complications that can occur with multiple myeloma, such as having to go on dialysis because of kidney failure.

This effort is made possible by a transformational gift from Mark and Cindy Pentecost with the goal of ultimately finding a cure for multiple myeloma, and the precursor clinic is only one part of this endeavor.

“To me this clinic is particularly important, because African Americans have about three times the chance of getting the precursor condition, called MGUS,” said Blue, who is in Moffitt’s Malignant Hematology Program. “It’s a way for people to know about the disease before it starts to break down their body, so that they can be followed carefully, to make sure they don't end up with broken bones or irreversible kidney damage.”

Moffitt is a nationwide leader in treating people with multiple myeloma. The precursor clinic is specifically designed for people who don’t have the cancer yet but are at high risk.

“People might say, why would I go to Moffitt Cancer Center when I don’t have cancer?” Blue said. The answer is that prevention and early detection can make a huge difference for people at risk of the disease.

What’s the best way to learn if someone might be at risk of multiple myeloma? Blue strongly encourages people to learn more about the Promise Study, which provides free screenings for Black people over 30 or for anyone with a close family member who has multiple myeloma or one of its precursor conditions.

“Because multiple myeloma specifically affects African Americans and minorities more than others, we need to be in tune with these populations as this clinic opens up to let them know, hey, you’re a vulnerable population and we’re here to help,” Blue said.

An opening date for the new clinic has not yet been scheduled.