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Blood. 2009 Jul 23;114(4):785-90. doi: 10.1182/blood-2008-12-192575. Epub 2009 Jan 29.

Increased risk of monoclonal gammopathy in first-degree relatives of patients with multiple myeloma or monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance.

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  • 1Division of Epidemiology, Department of Health Sciences Research, College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, 200 First Street SW, Rochester, MN 55905, USA.


We examined whether monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) is increased in first-degree relatives of multiple myeloma (MM) or MGUS patients. Probands were recruited from a population-based prevalence study (MGUS) and the Mayo Clinic (MM). Serum samples were collected from first-degree relatives older than 40 years and subjected to electrophoresis and immunofixation. The prevalence of MGUS in relatives was compared with population-based rates. Nine-hundred eleven relatives of 232 MM and 97 MGUS probands were studied. By electrophoresis, MGUS was detected in 55 (6%) relatives, and immunofixation identified 28 additional relatives for an age- and sex-adjusted prevalence of 8.1% (95% CI, 6.3 to 9.8). The prevalence of MGUS in relatives increased with age (1.9%, 6.9%, 11.6%, 14.6%, 21.0% for ages 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, >/= 80 years, respectively; P < .001). Using similar MGUS detection methods, there was a higher risk of MGUS in relatives (age-adjusted risk ratio [RR], 2.6; 95% CI, 1.9 to 3.4) compared with the reference population. The increased risk was seen among relatives of MM (RR, 2.0; 95% CI, 1.4 to 2.8) and MGUS probands (RR, 3.3; 95% CI, 2.1 to 4.8). The increased risk of MGUS in first-degree relatives of MGUS or MM patients implies shared environment and/or genetics.

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