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Reports on Overseas' Conferences and Meetings
Report on the 5th International Workshop on
Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia (IWWM)

Masako Iwanaga, Department of Molecular Medicine and Hematology

The 5th International Workshop on Waldenström’s Macroglobulinemia (WM) was held at Stockholm in Sweden on October 15 to 19, with approximately 90 participants. I was invited as the speaker in the first session of the Incidence and Predispositions to WM. (Abstract 102: Iwanaga M. Prevalence of MGUS and WM in Japan).

This workshop on WM has been held every two years since 2000 to discuss about epidemiological researches, molecular and genetic reaches, and clinical study of WM, then to report scientific consensus. Most participants were invited speakers and the remainder was the poster presentation by young researchers. I was a single participant from Asia. The topics given me were two: "Prevalence of MGUS in atomic bomb survivors” and "Incidence of WM in Japan". I suppose that the first topic was given because our epidemiology researches of the Nagasaki atomic bomb survivors were applauded (the related papers are listed on the bottom).

WM is a B-cell lymphoid malignancy with unclear disease definition. The disease has two characteristics of multiple myeloma and malignant lymphoma. Lymphoplasmacytic lymphoma (LPL) and Waldenström’s macroglobulinemia (WM) are synonyms. In the 2nd workshop on WM in 2002, a panel discussion was held to discuss about the definition of LPL/WM and published the consensus report in 2003. This year, a heated panel discussion was focused to discuss about clinical trial and therapy for WM.

As any malignant tumor, racial difference in incidence in multiple myeloma and WM, both are B-lymphocytic malignant tumors, also reported recently. Not only environmental factors but also genetic predisposition could be related with the difference. The incidence rate of a multiple myeloma is higher in the Black than the White, and that in Asians are low. On the other hand, incidence of WM is definitely higher in the White than the Black, though there is no data of Asians. In the workshop, I reported incidence of WM in Japan using data from regional cancer registries. Further detailed investigations are required.

Attending this workshop was the first time for me. I heard that this year workshop was the bigger than before because Dr. Jan Waldenström, a physician in Stockholm, reported a first case of WM in 1944. A social banquet was held in the city hall of Stockholm that is famous for the Nobel Prize. I stepped in there a little before Dr. Shimomura, the OB of the Nagasaki University and the 2008 Nobel Prize winner in chemistry.

The followings are study reports related with MGUS in Nagasaki atomic bomb survivors.
  1. Iwanaga M, et al. Prevalence of monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance: study of 52,802 persons in Nagasaki city, Japan. Mayo Clin Proc., 2007; 82:1474-1479.
  2. Iwanaga M, et al. Waldenstrom„fs Macroglobulinemia emerged in a patient with a 10-year stable IgG Monoclonal Gammopathy of Undetermined Significance. Leuk Res, 2009, 33, 193-195.
  3. Iwanaga M, et al. Relationship Between Monoclonal Gammopathy of Undetermined Significance and Radiation Exposure in Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Survivors. Blood, 2009, 113, 1639-1650.
  International Radiation Health Sciences Research
    Atomic Bomb Disease Medicine Research
    Radiation Basic Life Sciences Research
    Workshop / Special Meeting
    Academic Exchange
    Reports on Overseas' Conferences and Meetings
    Cooperation with WHO
Publicity Activities
  Truth of radiology (in Japanese)
  Radiation Q&A (in Japanese)
    Introduction of Global Strategic Center for Radiation Health Risk Control
(in Japanese) [PDF 9MB]
    Visiting Report of Chelnobyl
Yasuyuki Taira, Graduate Student
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