Awareness and Education
The successful Clinical Research Center for MPN requires rapid dissemination of information about MPN, new research findings, and available treatments to the largest number of physicians, patients and their families. In 1996, the Leukemia Department at MD Anderson established a Leukemia Website with the primary objectives of disseminating information about leukemia, announcing new treatment strategies and providing contact information to patients and physicians.
We have established recently the MPN internet site linked to the Leukemia Department website, taking advantage of the experience gained in the development and maintenance of the departmental site.
We have established collaborations with the MPD Foundation and Chronic MPD Educational Foundation, two large MPD patient support groups in the nation, and distribute the newsletter to its members. We also regularly publish articles about available therapies in Foundations’ newsletters. In addition to sharing valuable information, these activities also will increase accrual of patients to the trials to speed our efforts to finding an effective treatment and cure for MPD.
Dr Verstovsek organized an international meeting at MD Anderson in March of 2006, of the International Working Group for Myelofibrosis Research and Treatment (IWG-MRT), with a goal to define response criteria for treatment response in this type of MPN (published in May 2006). Another IWG-MRT meeting was organized at MD Anderson in November 2006 with a task to define uniform diagnostic criteria for PMF (published in May 2007). Since then once or twice a year an IWG-MRT meeting has been held at MD Anderson with another task to advance the field of MPN.
Lastly, since last year a yearly MPN specific symposium has been put in place to bring to practicing hematologists/oncologists and trainees up-to-date news on the developments in MPN (organized every May).