About Our Center
NewYork-Presbyterian is one of the few medical centers in the country with a multidisciplinary team of doctors who are experienced in diagnosing and treating amyloidosis – a rare disease characterized by abnormal accumulation of amyloid proteins in various organs.
Approach to Treatment
Because amyloidosis can affect many organs in the body, NewYork-Presbyterian has assembled doctors from several different specialties to collaborate and provide patients with a multidisciplinary approach to diagnosing and treating the disease. In fact, the Columbia Multidisciplinary Amyloidosis Program (CMAP) led by Suzanne Lentzsch, M.D., Ph.D., is recognized as an international and national referral center for amyloidosis.
The Program's specialists in hematology-oncology, cardiology, nephrology, pathology, neurology, and bone marrow transplantation collaborate to evaluate and treat patients with amyloidosis. Specifically, the specialists participate in regular multidisciplinary meetings where they discuss amyloidosis cases in depth (eg, kidney, nerve, and gastrointestinal function) and how best to manage symptoms. Such discussions enhance the physician's ability to customize a treatment plan for each patient.
In addition, during the multidisciplinary meetings specialists spend time discussing clinical trials and research. As a result, patients may have access to novel and emerging therapies for amyloidosis. Importantly, all specialists in the Program are familiar with amyloidosis and have diagnosed and treated patients with this rare condition. Patients who seek treatment for amyloidosis greatly benefit from the multidisciplinary expertise available at NewYork-Presbyterian.
History of Amyloidosis at NewYork-Presbyterian
Doctors at NewYork-Presbyterian have a strong history in the study of amyloidosis. Takashi Isobe, M.D., and Elliott Osserman, M.D., from the Department of Medicine and the Institute of Cancer Research at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (one of NYP's affiliated medical schools) conducted a landmark study published in The New England Journal of Medicine in 1974. The Columbia University researchers hypothesized that amyloid-related monoclonal immunoglobulins and Bence-Jones proteins were autoantibodies directed against normal tissue. A decade later, Portuguese physician Maria Joao Saraiva, Ph.D., who was working in the laboratory of Columbia University investigator DeWitt Goodman, M.D., performed genetic analysis of the transthyretin (TTR) protein and described a V30M mutation of the TTR gene. These landmark findings have enhanced our understanding of the various proteins involved in amyloidosis, while helping to set the tone for the current multidisciplinary approach to diagnosing and treating amyloidosis at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.