We examined four clinically assessed cytogenetic subtypes (t(11;14), t(4;14), monosomy 13/del13q and monosomy 17/del17p in 292 black patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM) from four medical centers, who had fluorescent in situ hybridization testing results available in their medical records. We then compared the prevalence of these abnormalities with a previously characterized Mayo Clinic cohort of 471 patients with MM. We found a significant difference in the prevalence of the t(11;14) immunoglobulin heavy chain (IgH) translocation between blacks and whites, 6.5% versus 17.6%, respectively, Po0.0001. Blacks also had lower rates of the t(4;14) IgH translocation, (5.5% versus 10%); monosomy 13/del13q (29.1 versus 49.3%); and monosomy 17/ del17p (7.9% versus 13%). Consequently, 63.4% of blacks versus 34.6% of whites did not have any of the four abnormalities that we studied, Po0.001. As almost all MM is associated with either an IgH translocation or trisomies, we hypothesize that MM in blacks is associated with either excess prevalence of either the trisomic (hyperdiploid) form of MM or an IgH translocation besides t(11;14) or t (4;14). We conclude that there are significant differences in the cytogenetic subtypes of MM that occur in blacks and whites.
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