Bone marrow microenvironment in myelomagenesis: Its potential role in early diagnosis

Arun Balakumaran, Pamela Gehron Robey, Neal Fedarko, Ola Landgren

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Multiple myeloma (MM) is the second most common hematological malignancy, with an overall survival of 4-6 years. It is always preceded by a premalignant stage called monoclonal gammopathy of unknown significance (MGUS). Importantly, at this time we lack reliable predictors to determine who will progress from MGUS to MM, and who will remain stable. The bone marrow microenvironment plays a key role in myelomagenesis (growth, survival and migration of malignant plasma cells). In the present review, we summarize and discuss our current understanding of the bone marrow microenvironment and its compartments in relation to myelomagenesis. Although it remains to be proven, we believe that an improved characterization of the cellular constituents, the extracellular matrix components and the soluble factors of the bone marrow could open up novel avenues to better understand underlying mechanisms of the transformation from MGUS to MM. Ultimately, this will lead to the development of early treatment of high-risk precursor disease aimed to delay/prevent MM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)465-480
Number of pages16
JournalExpert Review of Molecular Diagnostics
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 2010


  • Angiogenesis
  • Bone marrow microenvironment
  • Bone turnover
  • Extracellular matrix
  • Monoclonal gammopathy of unknown significance
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Multiplex ELISA
  • Osteoclast
  • Proteoglycans
  • RANK ligand
  • Wnt signaling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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