The 11th Annual

Canadian Hematology Conference 2021 Report


12 Nov 2021


October 2nd 2021


Updates in Myelodysplastic Syndromes

Dr. Mikkael Sekeres, Sylvester Comprehensive  Cancer Centre

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Presentation Summary

MDS is a Cancer 

  • For Lower-risk MDS, focus on what bugs patient most: 
    • Anemia 
    • Thrombocytopenia
  • Same for Higher-risk, and focus on Response Duration, Overall Survival.
  • Considerations for Modifying Multilineage Dysplasia
  • Specific HMAs Options and Higher-risk MDS Combinations
Novel Approaches Including Non-Intensive Induction in AML

Dr. Guillaume Richard-Carpentier, Queen’s University

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Presentation Summary

Integrated genetic profiling is now critical to inform treatment decisions for patients with acute myeloid leukemia 

 Multiple novel therapeutic options are available for patients with newly diagnosed AML who are ineligible for intensive chemotherapy  

These options offer but require:

  • Improved efficacy 
  • Different response kinetics and monitoring required 
  • Specific side effect profiles to monitor  

 There is hope for further improvements in the treatment and clinical outcomes of older patients with AML  

 Future Perspectives 

  • Targeted agents available for patients with relapsed / refractory AML 
  • Utilization of lesser intensity regimens in younger patients with AML or older patients who are eligible for intensive chemotherapy 
  • Evaluation of triplet-drug regimens in older patients with AML 
  • Integration of FLT3 inhibitors 
  • Integration of IDH1/2 inhibitors 
  • Identification of subsets of patients for treatment-free remission?  
  • Very-high risk AML remain an urgent unmet need (t-AML, TP53 mut, CK) 
  • Anti-CD47 antibodies (e.g. magrolimab) 
  • Checkpoint inhibitors (e.g. anti-TIM3 antibodies)  
Clinical Updates in Myeloproliferative Neoplasms

Dr. Mrinal Patnaik, Mayo Clinic

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Presentation Summary

Myeloproliferative neoplasms are hematological stem cell malignancies enriched in driver mutations signaling through the JAK-STAT pathway (JAK2, CALR and MPL) and are associated with morbidity and mortality. 

Classical MPN consist of Essential Thrombocythemia (ET), Polycythemia Vera (PV),  and Primary Myelofibrosis (PMF)

ET and PV associated with thrombotic morbidity 

JAK STAT signaling is enhanced in MPN with driver mutations including JAK2, CALR and MPL 

  • Triple negative MPN- aggressive and poor outcomes 

Treatment algorithms based on risk stratification 

Definite role for allogeneic HCT 

Emerging options – Epigenetic-based Therapies in Myelofibrosis Therapy 

Challenges in Hematology

Challenges of Older Patients

Dr. Stefano Luminari, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia

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Presentation Summary

  • Older/frail patients are hard to treat and require a multidimensional and personalized approach 
  • Expert and dedicated teams are needed 
  • Management of older patients cannot be limited to a discussion about one standard therapy“Perfect can be enemy of the good” 
  • Frailty is not comorbidity and is not absolute.  
Intersectionality in Haematology

Dr. Nada Hamad, St. Vincent’s Hospital Sydney

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Presentation Summary

Intersectionality in Health 

  • A framework that focuses on the ways multiple axes of inequality intersect and compound at macro and micro levels to produce a broad range of unequal health outcomes. It is time to integrate intersectionality in all aspects of medicine so that we can deliver effective and compassionate care for all.
Covid 19 vaccination in CLL and Heme Malignancies

Dr. Gwen Nichols, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS)

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Presentation Summary

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in US created a patient registry to understand safety and efficacy of vaccination in the blood cancer population 

  • Patients with hematologic malignancies have worse outcomes if infected with COVID-19 compared to the normal age-matched population    (Vijenthera et al., 2020)
  • Cancer patients were largely excluded from the vaccine trials 
    (Griffiths and Segal, 2021)
  • Suggestion that ALL blood cancer patients: “GET VACCINATED, ACT UNVACCINATED”