Our new website and a new understanding of MPNs

We hope you are enjoying the new MPN Voice website, many thanks to all who have been involved in its creation. One of the new features is this blog and this is a week for hot news in the MPN field, new scientific research pushing forward our knowledge and understanding of the pathogenesis of the MPNs myeloproliferative neoplasms.

In his 1951 seminal paper where he coined the term myeloproliferative disorder Dameshek wrote “…we find it difficult to draw any clear-cut dividing lines; in fact, so many “transition forms” exist that one may with equal reasonableness call a single condition by at least two different terms.”  In 2015, a decade from the original descriptions of JAK2V617F, the myeloproliferative neoplasms are defined by an increasingly intricate genetic landscape. Just appearing in one of the haematology world's prestigious journals known as "BLOOD" are two articles from researchers  W. Vainchenker and R. Kralovics, who report the discovery of novel mutations in the MPL and JAK2 genes in 5-10% of essential thrombocythaemia (ET) and primary myelofibrosis (PMF) patients, who lack what are regarded as classical mutations and were currently considered as having what is known as a “triple negative” (TN) disease. These are exciting and important papers still highlighting the importance of JAK2 and the MPL gene which we already know are important in MPN. This still does leave about 20-25% of ET and PMF patients with an unknown mutation but at present many groups are working on this very subject. Reading the papers themselves requires at least a modicum of medical knowledge but there is a commentary written by myself and Alessandro Vannucchi which discusses some of the details and implications of this important work. Both papers and the commentary will appear on www.bloodjournal.org.

Enjoy reading,

Claire Harrison