Archive for 2017

Strength in Mothers and Numbers

After welcoming a new baby, Jackie Holscher of Ankeny, Iowa, was diagnosed with breast cancer in May.

Ashli Brehm (left), breast cancer survivor, put out the call to support Jackie Holscher, who could not breastfeed her child because of her cancer treatment. The response was overhwhelming.

The mother of three met with a medical team in Des Moines, Iowa, but was unsatisfied with the care she received. A family friend suggested she make an appointment with Elizabeth Reed, MD, a medical oncologist at Nebraska Medicine.

“On the phone, they explained their One Day, One Plan approach – and got me in right away,” says Holscher.

In one day, as part of the Nebraska Medicine Cancer Network, breast cancer patients meet with an entire team of breast cancer specialists in medical, surgical and radiation oncology. By day’s end, patients have a plan in place.

“Each doctor took a full hour with me. I walked out of there feeling so amazing. They found a plan for me as Jackie – not as a cancer patient,” says Holscher. “I told my husband the drive from Ankeny to Omaha is worth it if I have people who have my back.”

Holscher underwent six rounds of chemotherapy, followed by a double mastectomy – which meant, she could no longer breastfeed her daughter. That’s when Ashli Brehm, another Nebraska Medicine breast cancer survivor, stepped in with an idea.

Through her Facebook page Baby on the Brehm, which has nearly 8,000 followers, Brehm posted Holscher’s story – and asked for 6,500 ounces of breast milk donations. The response was overwhelming. Brehm received messages from mothers all over the country – including Nebraska, Kansas, Florida and even Canada.

“I just cried,” says Brehm. “I watch too many women go through this and the things they lose, so being able to give something and say, ‘No cancer, you don’t get to do this. You don’t get to control this,’ I think that’s really so therapeutic, selfishly for me.”

To date, Brehm has received offers for nearly 20,000 ounces of breast milk. Most of the milk is being stored in freezers at Nebraska Medicine and Brehm’s house. Holscher picks up a new batch when she drives to Omaha for infusion treatments every few weeks. Recently, Holscher’s medical team told her she’s cancer-free.

“I breathed for the first time in six months,” says Holscher. “It’s rare to find a group of doctors who work together for you. This is where I need to be. I’m so thankful for everyone’s support along the way.”

Watch more in this KETV news story.


To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Melanie Stewart Named One of ’40 Under 40’

Melanie Stewart, campus sustainability manager, was recently named 40 Under 40 by Midlands Business Journal.

Melanie Stewart, sustainability manager for Nebraska Medicine and UNMC, has been chosen as one of the 2017 recipients of the Midlands Business Journal’s annual 40 Under 40 Award.

The award honors 40 Greater Omaha, Council Bluffs and Sarpy County entrepreneurs, executives or professional men and women under the age of 40. Recipients will be recognized during a Thursday, Dec. 15, breakfast.

Although she says she was pleased to be recognized, Stewart — who was named the medical center’s first sustainability manager in 2014 — stresses the award was for achievements the entire campus has worked on.

“It was an honor to be nominated,” she says. “It’s nice to know people notice the work we’re doing and the effect it has on health and our community. Still, it is important to note that while we’ve done some impressive things, it’s definitely a campus effort — the energy we’ve saved has every bit as much to do with facilities and the energy group — and the people who turn off lights — as it does with me.

“The LiveGreen Ambassadors have done a lot of work to get the word out to campus and in turn lots of people help achieve these goals by recycling, carpooling, conserving water and shutting hood sashes, just to name a few.”

Stewart, who has been with the medical center since 2000, points to the medical center’s embrace of the Sustainability Master Plan, written in 2011, as integral to the success of sustainability efforts.

“We hit a lot of milestones by 2015, with a 25 percent reduction in energy use, a 22 percent reduction in water use, so those are fantastic achievements.”

She says metrics show that other goals within the master plan, such as use of active transportation with TravelSmart, continue to move within reach.

Stewart adds the medical center provides a work climate that fosters the growth of young leaders.

“If you are going to lead the world, you have to have leaders on campus, and you have to have new ideas, new ways of thinking, to solve new problems. I think anybody who is looking to be a leader can do that here.”

The Midlands Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 issue, featuring Stewart and other Omaha-area business leaders, will be released on Dec. 15.


To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine or for more information, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Nebraska Medicine Website Earns National Recognition

computer-monitor-blank-mdThe NebraskaMed.com website has undergone some major changes in the past year in its appearance and functionality, and people are taking notice.

The website recently earned a Silver for Best Overall Internet Site category at the 2017 eHealthcare Leadership Awards.

“We’re happy to be recognized in this category after all the work that went into the web redesign by so many people,” says Jason Bash, Digital Services manager. “As we said at site launch, that was just a point in the journey, not a destination. We’ve made great progress since then and will continue to make improvements to build upon this foundation.”

There were around 1,000 entries with Nebraska Medicine being recognized among some other highly-regarded peers, as you can see below.


Cleveland Clinic

Mayo Clinic Health System

Mayo Clinic


Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin

UCLA Health


Nebraska Medicine

Butler Health System

Henry Ford Health System

Duke Health

“I am very proud of how the team came together to create a nationally-recognized customer experience that is on par with and beyond other renowned brands,” says  Frank Lococo, Corporate Marketing and Communications vice president. “Especially as consumerism grows in health care, we are well positioned to connect with individuals where they are looking for information so they can make more informed decisions.”

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center Takes National Stage


Ken Cowan, MD, PhD, director of the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center, left, escorts Jane Pauley of “CBS Sunday Morning.”

CBS will air a segment on the Healing Arts program at the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center on its CBS Sunday Morning news magazine program on Sunday, Dec. 3.

Locally, the show runs from 8 to 9:30 a.m. on KMTV (Ch. 3). The air date is tentative, as breaking news may cause producers to hold the segment. Following its airing, the segment will be available on the CBS Sunday Morning website.

The Healing Arts program is highlighted by the Chihuly Sanctuary – the most comprehensive health care environment structure ever created by world-renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly.

Other art features include:

  • An 82-foot tall “Search” Tower designed by Jun Kaneko of Omaha and located at the front entrance of the cancer center
  • Leslie’s Healing Garden, an all-season garden where families can spend time and enjoy flowers, pine trees and heated walkways
  • Artwork from more than 15 other artists is displayed around the building, including therapeutic art and music programs, diverse art collections and rotating art exhibits

“Research has proven that healing takes more than just medicine,” says Ken Cowan, MD, PhD, director of the cancer center. “The Healing Arts can provide patients a holistic view of medicine by creating a supportive and comforting environment. This can result in major dividends by helping to reduce the pain perception, anxiety, stress, loneliness and depression that can accompany cancer.”

In addition to letting the CBS crew tour the Healing Arts in the cancer center, Dr. Cowan showed how research and patient care have been integrated through knowledge transfer zones, which enable cancer researchers and clinicians to easily come together and discuss their findings and look for ways to work together.

The CBS Sunday Morning team, including host Jane Pauley, visited the cancer center Nov. 1 and 2, interviewing Warren Buffett and Pamela Buffett, who used to babysit for Warren’s children. The CBS team filmed throughout the cancer center.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Nebraska Medical Center Verified as State’s Only Level I Trauma Center

Trauma Shoot 1When Nebraska Medicine leadership announced a change to Omaha’s trauma system in August 2014, the announcement was made with an eye on the future. The goal: to expand its trauma services, provide 24/7/365 care and become a nationally recognized, Level I Trauma Center. Today, that goal has officially been met, with the American College of Surgeons (ACS) verifying Nebraska Medical Center as a Level I Trauma Center, recognizing the trauma center’s dedication to providing optimal care for injured patients.

Previously, only a state-designated Comprehensive Trauma Center, achieving the ACS verification means Nebraska Medical Center not only provides the hospital resources necessary for trauma care, but also the entire spectrum of care to address the needs of all injured patients. Nebraska Medical Center is now the only ACS-verified Level I Trauma Center in the state, with the nearest other facilities being in Des Moines, Iowa, Kansas City, Missouri and Denver, Colorado.

“This was all done with the citizens of our region in mind,” says P.J. Schenarts, MD, trauma medical director. “We set out three years ago to raise the bar for trauma care in our community by expanding our resources and infrastructure to align our services with a national standard. This achievement means we have the capacity and capability to treat any patient’s injury, no matter their age, at any time of the day or night.”

There are five separate levels of verification in the ACS program, each with its own set of thorough criteria that must be met to achieve ACS verification. A team of experienced reviewers also conducts an on-site review and evaluates the criteria against the hospital’s actual performance.

“Meeting the rigorous criteria for Level I ACS trauma verification speaks to the commitment and quality of our trauma program,” says Karen Saxton, MSN, RN, trauma program director.

“We often don’t think of it this way, but trauma is an epidemic,” says Dr. Schenarts. “It affects everyone and it’s the leading killer of Nebraskans under the age of 44 and the third leading cause of death in our older citizens. But research shows that treatment at a Level I Trauma Center reduces the risk of death by 25 percent.”

ACS verification means the medical center provides the full breadth of trauma services to the community via 10 dual-board certified trauma surgeons, all who live in the Omaha community.

Nebraska Medical Center currently employs more than 50 subspecialty physicians who are experts in trauma surgery, neurosurgery, reconstructive surgery, thoracic surgery, vascular surgery, orthopedics, oral maxillofacial surgery, urology, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, otolaryngology (ear, nose and throat) and ophthalmology. The hospital also has a dozen physicians certified in pediatric critical care and pediatric surgery.

“This is more than a plaque you hang on your wall,” says CEO Dan DeBehnke, MD, MBA. “This marks years of hard work on behalf of our trauma team to provide the highest level of trauma care possible. We sincerely hope you never need us, but people who live in Omaha and the surrounding communities should feel comfortable in knowing we’re here to help you and your family during life’s most traumatic moments.”

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Lab Sleuths Solve Mystery for World’s Benefit

Lab Identifies New Species Kathy Talmon working in lab

A new discovery made by Nebraska Medicine and UNMC researchers has been named after retired colleague, Kathy Talmon, who was a lead technologist in the tuberculosis lab when she retired in 2014.

Team Discovers a New Bacterium Species

Laboratory sleuths at Nebraska Medicine and UNMC have discovered and named a disease-causing bacterium that was previously unidentified.

Discovering, naming and publishing a new organism is a big deal in the world of microbiology. Characterization of a new species helps health professionals around the world identify and appropriately treat infected patients. The new species was recognized as causing respiratory infections in patients with suppressed immune systems.

Lab Indentifies New Species - Mycobacterium talmoniae

A vile of Mycobacterium talmoniae

The organism, Mycobacterium talmoniae, is named to honor Kathy Talmon, a laboratory technologist who worked for the state public health laboratory in Lincoln before the lab’s move to the Nebraska Medical Center campus. She was a lead technologist in the tuberculosis lab at Nebraska Medicine when she retired in 2014.

“Kathy’s expertise was in tuberculosis detection,” says Peter Iwen, PhD, director of the Nebraska Public Health Laboratory at UNMC. “She also helped in the identification of other Mycobacterium species which led to the discovery of this new species. The honor of naming this organism for her highlights her contributions to the public health and TB laboratories.

“It was quite a surprise,” says Talmon. “I was astonished and really couldn’t believe it at first. It’s a great honor. In microbiology most names come from famous researchers.”

The case started when the new organism, detected from a patient with respiratory symptoms, did not identify with the usual tests used. Comparison using new tests led to the discovery of a new species. Additional comparisons also showed the organism to be identical to an unnamed organism reported in 2000 by an out-of-state lab.

In 2012, Dr. Iwen initiated the complicated process of validating a new species with colleagues at National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado and Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado.

“We worked hard to process through the tedious steps for species validation,” he says. “As a final step, the organism was recently published in the International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology. The newly discovered strain of mycobacterium is now part of roughly 170 officially recognized species within the mycobacterium genus.”

He says as a part of the validation process, the organism was “deposited” or registered in two culture collections, one located in Germany at one of the largest biological resource centers in the world, and the other in the U.S. at the American Type Culture Collection.

“Our new species, Mycobacterium talmoniae, adds to the literature of nontuberculous Mycobacterium and complements previous studies that led to the naming of another new species in 2004, Mycobacterium nebraskense,” he says.

Alison Freifeld, MD, and Sara Buss, MD also participated in the project.

Nebraska Medicine Now a Comprehensive Stroke Center


William Thorell, MD, endovascular neurosurgeon
William Thorell, MD, endovascular neurosurgeon

Nebraska Medicine was recently certified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center by Joint Commission, in collaboration with the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Brain Attack Coalition — the highest level of stroke certification available.

This advanced designation by the nation’s largest independent health care evaluation body means that Nebraska Medicine is equipped to handle the most complex stroke cases. Nebraska Medicine is the only medical center in the region to receive this certification.

“This establishes by a respected third-party reviewer that we are the place to be for stroke care,” says William Thorell, MD, endovascular neurosurgeon at Nebraska Medicine. “Nebraska Medicine meets the standards that no other institution does in this region for the treatment of all types of stroke patients.”

Nebraska Medicine has the only stroke team in the area capable of providing specialized around-the-clock treatment, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We are also the only hospital in the region with three fellowship-trained endovascular neurosurgeons trained to surgically treat hemorrhagic strokes and ischemic strokes that affect blood vessels in the brain using innovative, less invasive techniques. Andrew Gard, MD, and Daniel Surdell, MD, are also fellowship-trained endovascular neurosurgeons trained to surgically treat hemorrhagic strokes and ischemic strokes.

Need an Expert Opinion?
To schedule an appointment with one of our neurologists or neurosurgeons, please call us at +1 (402) 559-3090.

“Endovascular and cerebrovascular neurosurgery are highly specialized fields that allow us to provide options for complex stroke patients that otherwise would not be available in the region,” says Dr. Thorell. “When it comes to treating stroke, immediacy and experience is crucial. These are cases in which every second counts in delivering the most appropriate and expert care.”

The management of medical stroke is also key to improving patient outcomes in stroke.  Nebraska Medicine has the largest fellowship-trained vascular neurology group in the region. Pierre Fayad, MD, Marco Gonzales-Castellon, MD, Michael Pichler, MD, along with neurointensivist Daryl Gress, MD, and neurohospitalist Scott Diesing, MD, work alongside the endovascular neurosurgeons to ensure that best practice stroke care is provided throughout the patient’s hospitalization.  In addition to the expertise of providers during the acute hospitalization, Nebraska Medicine’s stroke program also includes a specialized outpatient stroke clinic dedicated to furthering stroke recovery and secondary stroke prevention with access to sub-specialists in rehabilitation, movement, memory and neuropsychology.

The dedicated personnel of the Nebraska Medicine stroke team also includes a specialized Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit and a state-of-the-art stroke unit with highly trained staff specializing in stroke care. “The Comprehensive Stroke Center certification represents the integration of specialists and staff across multiple areas of expertise that distinguish Nebraska Medicine as the destination for stroke care,” says Daryl Gress, MD, neurointensivist at Nebraska Medicine.  “To truly be a comprehensive center it is not about any one component of care, it is about a team of individuals that are diligently focused on improving patient outcomes.”

The requirements to be a Comprehensive Stroke Center must include:

  • Having a dedicated neurosciences intensive care unit beds for complex stroke patients that provide neuro-critical care 24  hours a day, seven days a week
  • Use of advanced imaging capabilities
  • Annually provide care to 20 or more patients with a diagnosis of subarachnoid hemorrhage; perform 15 or more endovascular coiling or surgical clipping procedures for aneurysm; and administer IV tPA to an average of 15 or more eligible patients
  • Use of a peer-review process to evaluate and monitor the care provided to patients with ischemic stroke and subarachnoid hemorrhage
  • Participating in stroke research

It has been established that those patients who are treated within a few hours of an acute stroke using specialized treatments and medications at the hands of a dedicated and coordinated team experience the most positive outcomes.

“Our skilled and comprehensive stroke team will ensure patients receive the most advanced and comprehensive stroke care from the moment of arrival through recovery,” says Dr. Thorell.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Adult congenital heart disease program accredited


Image with caption: Shane Tsai, M.D.

Shane Tsai, M.D.

In recognition of its expertise in serving adults with congenital heart disease (CHD), Nebraska Medicine and Children’s Hospital & Medical Center’s joint Adult Congenital Heart Disease (ACHD) program has received accreditation from the Adult Congenital Heart Association (ACHA), a nationwide organization focused on connecting patients, family members and health care providers to form a community of support and network of experts with knowledge of CHD.Individuals with CHD, the most common birth defect diagnosed in one in 100 births, are living longer. There are now 1.4 million adults in the U.S. living with one of the many different types of congenital heart defects that range from simple to complex. The Nebraska Medicine/Children’s program annually treats around 1,500 ACHD patients from across the region at both institutions.

“Already home to Nebraska’s only board certified experts in ACHD, the program is now one of the country’s first to be nationally accredited in comprehensive care,” said program co-director Shane Tsai, M.D., cardiologist and congenital heart disease specialist. “This distinction reflects our ability to provide extraordinary multidisciplinary services, and patients can feel confident that they are receiving the highest quality of care in the region.”

The joint program received accreditation by meeting ACHA’s criteria, which includes medical services and personnel requirements, and going through a rigorous accreditation process, both of which were developed over a number of years through a collaboration with doctors, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses and ACHD patients.

“This accreditation recognizes not only that we provide exceptional cardiac care, but also comprehensive expertise and support for ACHD patients at every stage,” said Jon Cramer, M.D., pediatric and adult congenital cardiologist and program co-director. “We offer support for a teen’s transition to adult care, a pregnant patient in need of increased monitoring, unique OB/GYN care, specialized anesthesia services and all aspects of cardiac treatment and intervention. The ACHA acknowledges that this breadth of services leads to better patient outcomes and experiences.”

“There are now more adults than children in the U.S. with CHD,” said Mark Roeder, president and CEO of ACHA. “Accreditation will elevate the standard of care and have a positive impact on the futures of those living with this disease. Coordination of care is key, and this accreditation program will make care more streamlined for ACHD patients, improving their quality of life.”

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.

Promising New Cancer Treatment Offered at Nebraska Medicine is Approved by the FDA

Dr. Julie Vose visits with Amy Cheese during a clinic appointment at Nebraska Medicine in early 2017. When Amy first arrived, she had a tumor inside her chest the size of a grapefruit. Today, Amy is in remission and back to teaching.  

It’s the fifth most common type of cancer in U.S. adults. For years, traditional therapies to treat non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) have included chemotherapy, radiation and a stem cell transplant. But after several years of clinical trials, a promising new option has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and will soon be commercially offered at Nebraska Medicine.

“This clinical trial has been unbelievably successful in patient populations where they have failed every other type of treatment, so this is a big home run,” says Julie Vose, MD, hematologist and medical oncologist.

On Oct. 18, the FDA approved Yescarta, a cell-based gene therapy, used to treat adults with certain types of relapsed B-cell lymphomas. Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR T-cell therapy) is a way of taking the patient’s own immune system and modifying it to attack the cancer.

To schedule an appointment with a lymphoma specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call 402.559.5600.

“T cells are white blood cells that help our bodies fight infection and cancer,” explains Dr. Vose. “In lymphoma patients, these cells have gone haywire. They don’t fight the cancer properly. This clinical trial has allowed us to take the patient’s own T cells outside the body and restimulate them to be able to fight their own lymphoma.”

Amy Cheese of Fort Collins, Colorado, was out of options before coming to Nebraska Medicine for the clinical trial. The kindergarten teacher had a grapefruit-sized tumor in her chest when she first met Dr. Vose. After receiving CAR T-cell therapy, Cheese is now in remission and back to teaching.

“I can’t stop smiling,” she said. “I am so thankful that I was able to participate in this clinical trial. I think of the people who will not have to hear the words, ‘There is nothing else we can do.’ I am just so thankful.”

Nebraska Medicine was one of the first hospitals in the Midwest to open the clinical trial, and attracted patients from all over the region. Other health care systems include Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR T-cell therapy) is a way of taking the patient’s own immune system and modifying it to attack the cancer.

“The places that participated in the clinical trials will be the first places to have it commercially available,” says Dr. Vose. “Eventually, it will spread out to other medical centers,” says Dr. Vose. “Because it’s so specific on how it needs to be given, large transplant centers will be the places that can do this.”

Dr. Vose expects the therapy to be commercially available within three to six months. Until then, Nebraska Medicine still has a few clinical trial spots open.

“Clinical trials are very important, especially when it comes to cancer,” explains Dr. Vose. “That’s the way we discover new treatments. Everything we have today is because of patients who participated in clinical trials in the past. Without patients on clinical trials, we wouldn’t have any cancer treatments today or tomorrow.”.


To schedule an appointment with a lymphoma specialist at Nebraska Medicine, call +1-402-559-3090 or OIHS@nebraskamed.com.


Natural Killer (NK) Cell Therapy for Multiple Myeloma Patients


Sarah Holstein, MD, PhD

While the outcomes of patients diagnosed with multiple myeloma have significantly improved, there continues to be a need for new therapeutic approaches. As is the case with many other cancers, there has been great interest in the possibility of harnessing the power of the immune system to attack the myeloma cells. One such approach is the use of natural killer (NK) cell therapy.

NK cells are a type of white blood cell. NK cells play important roles in immune defenses against infected cells and tumor cells and also help regulate the immune response. As their name suggests, these cells have the ability to kill other cells. There are factors found on the surfaces of the NK cells and the potential target cells that help signal to the NK cells and let them know whether the target cell is abnormal or foreign to the body and therefore should be killed or whether the target cell is normal and therefore should not be killed. Because of the ability of NK cells to recognize and kill cancer cells, there has been much interest in the use of these cells as anti-cancer therapy.


Nancy Gessmann of Harlan, Iowa, is enrolled in the clinical trial at Nebraska Medicine. Watch her story below.

There are two main approaches to using NK cells as anti-cancer therapy. One involves using the patient’s own NK cells while the other approach is to use a donor source for the NK cells. One problem with using a patient’s NK cells is that NK cells in cancer patients are often dysfunctional – the cancer cells can interfere with the activity of NK cells and therefore “escape” the NK cells. In addition, prior chemotherapy treatments can make it difficult to collect sufficient numbers of healthy NK cells. Thus, the alternative approach of using donor NK cells is being studied. The donor NK cells that have been studied thus far in clinical trials have either been collected from healthy donors or have been derived from umbilical cord blood cells and grown in a laboratory. The latter approach has the advantage of being “off-the-shelf,” thus a patient does not have to wait for the availability of a donor.

Currently, Nebraska Medicine is participating in a clinical trial involving cord blood-derived NK cells for multiple myeloma patients. The strategy that is being investigated in this study is to add the NK cellular therapy into the standard bone marrow transplant procedure that many myeloma patients undergo. The standard bone marrow transplant (autologous stem cell transplant) involves the collection of the patient’s stem cells, followed by high-dose chemotherapy, followed by infusion of the stem cells. For patients enrolled in the NK cell trial, an infusion of the NK cells is given after the infusion of their own stem cells. The purpose of this study is to determine what the optimal timing of the NK cell infusion is relative to the stem cell infusion and to make sure that the NK cells can be given safely. The hope is that the NK cell infusion, given after the high dose chemotherapy and during the time when the bone marrow (and immune system) is being re-set, will optimize the ability of the NK cells to target and kill any remaining myeloma cells.

It is an exciting time for cancer research. We are learning more and more every day about how to use the power of the immune system to fight cancer. NK cell therapy may prove to be a new strategy that can improve the outcomes of patients with myeloma.