Gail J. Roboz, MD, associate professor of Medicine, director, Leukemia Program, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, discusses the growing field of molecular mutations in myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS).
Roboz says using molecular mutations for treatment and diagnosis of MDS has received a lot of attention at the 2015 International MDS Symposium. With new mutations coming out almost daily, it is difficult to know which mutations are commercially available to test and what to do with them, Roboz says.
Speakers at the symposium have emphasized that given that clonal hematopoiesis is common in older patients, it’s difficult to take some mutations identified in the panel and label a patient with an MDS diagnosis, Roboz says. It is known that certain prognostic implications are given to certain molecular mutations, such as TET2, but since there are more than one mutation in patients, Roboz says it’s becoming harder to figure out how a whole series of mutational abnormalities might effect the prognosis of the patient, and how those might change with treatments.