Quite a bit is known about bone-building cells (osteoblasts) and bone-resorbing cells (osteoclasts), but not much is known about bone marrow fat cells—aside from the fact that bone marrow becomes packed with them as we age or become obese. We also know that there is a correlation between the incidence of multiple myeloma (a type of blood cancer that affects the bone marrow) and age, and multiple myeloma and obesity. This naturally poses the question, how might bone marrow fat cells be connected to or aid in the development of the tumor cells seen in multiple myeloma?
This is precisely what Michaela Reagan, Ph.D. and her team at the Maine Medical Center Research Institute are investigating. She joins the podcast today to discuss a variety of interesting topics, including the details of this research, the process of multiple myeloma, how tumor and non-tumor cells enter the bloodstream from the bone, the parallels between bone cancer and osteoporosis, epigenetic changes in tumors, and where her research is headed. Press play for all the details and learn more by visiting mmcri.org and clicking on Dr. Reagan in the faculty list.