Myeloma survivors owe much to Robert A. Kyle’s reluctance to perform autopsies or to undergo cardiac catheterization.
Those natural aversions led Kyle to choose hematology over two other research options toward the end of his Mayo Clinic residency, and launched Kyle on a course of research that has transformed our understanding of dysproteinemias, the family of plasma cell disorders related to multiple myeloma (MM).
The 86-year-old doctor, who has now been at the Mayo Clinic more than 60 years, not only discovered how such disorders progress to serious diseases such as MM, but also worked out the appropriate medical response at every step. Those and hundreds more breakthroughs stemmed from a unique combination of clinical practice, data mining, and sheer effort. Kyle has put in nearly 80-hour weeks for six decades now, and colleagues say he’s still working close to full speed. “It would be nearly impossible to overstate Robert Kyle’s impact on multiple myeloma research and treatment,” said Kenneth C. Anderson, MD, Harvard Medical School, Jerome Lipper Multiple Myeloma Center, and LeBow Institute for Myeloma Therapeutics. “He is my hero, my inspiration, my role model. He is a giant.”

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