Can miRNAs Predict MM Treatment Response?

By Patrick Daly - Last Updated: April 12, 2023

Study authors, led by Maria-Alexandra Papadimitriou, stated that the widely heterogeneous response to multiple myeloma (MM) treatments has limited providers’ abilities to accurately predict prognosis and individualize therapies. Papadimitriou and colleagues miRNA-sequenced patients with MM to identify potentially valuable prognostic markers.

According to the report in the Journal of Translational Medicine, upregulation of miR-25 in CD138+ bone marrow plasma cells from patients with MM was a strong independent predictor for poor treatment response and disease progression among this population.

miR-25 Plasma Levels Strongly Correlated With MM Outcomes

Initially, researchers sequenced plasma cells from 24 patients with MM and 24 with smoldering MM (sMM) to characterize miRNA profiles. They then used in-house real-time-qPCR assays to assess levels of CD138+ and circulating miR-25 in CD138+ plasma cells from a screening cohort of 167 patients, of which 69 also had available MM peripheral plasma samples.

Investigators found miR-25 in CD138+ plasma cells was upregulated for patients with MM versus sMM, Revised International Staging System (R-ISS) stage II/III versus R-ISS stage I disease, and progression versus no progression.

In the screening cohort analysis, CD138+ miR-25 levels were associated with short-term progression (hazard ratio [HR], 2.729; P=.009) and poor survival (HR, 4.581; P=.004). The authors added that these findings were verified in 2 external validation cohorts with 760 (HR, 1.414; P=.039) and 149 patients (HR, 1.878; P=.005).

Papadimitriou and colleagues ultimately suggested that pre-treatment miR-25 plasma levels effectively predict worse outcomes, “serving as [a] potent non-invasive molecular tool in ameliorating MM patients’ risk-stratification and prognosis.”

Related: The Significance of Thrombosis in Multiple Myeloma

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