Multiple myeloma is a malignant plasma cell disorder which accounts for about 10% of all hematological malignancies and is the second most common cancer of the blood.
Multiple myeloma today has a 5-year mortality rate of 50 % and the median age of diagnosis is 65 years. Current treatments aim to alleviate symptoms and prevent disease progression. Remissions may be induced with steroids, chemotherapy, proteasome inhibitors, immunomodulatory drugs such as thalidomide or lenalidomide and stem cell transplants. Prior to stem-cell transplantation, patients receive an initial course of induction chemotherapy with combinations of lenalidomide-dexamethasone or bortezomib – dexamethasone. These drugs can control the disease to some extent but have severe side effects such as deep venous thrombosis, neutropenia or thrombocytopenia. There is a need for therapies with improved efficacy but also better safety profile to improve the quality of life for multiple myeloma patients.