Multiple Myeloma (MM) is a deadly B-cell neoplasm that arises in 1 in 140 persons within their lifetime. Unfortunately, despite intense and continuous treatment, MM almost always recurs and is fatal.
The Tiedemann lab seeks to identify how MM escapes cure by mainstay treatments and aims to design treatments that can address the barriers to cure. We have discovered immature MM cells that differ substantially from the mature tumour cells that are targeted by conventional treatments and which may represent the root source of relapse in patients that initially respond to therapy.
To identify which MM cells escape treatment and to confirm which cells give rise to relapse we are tracking tumour cell subpopulations in sequential patient samples by deep DNA sequencing. Furthermore, to characterize the gene expression and molecular targets present within these tumour cells we are performing single-cell RNA profiling. We have developed novel bioinformatic tools to aid this work.
The ultimate goal of this research is to provide better treatments. Towards this end, we are developing immune cell-engaging biologics designed to target molecular vulnerabilities present in both immature and mature MM cells. By simultaneously targeting all tumour cell maturation states, we aim to achieve deeper and more durable therapeutic responses for MM patients.