Quarter 2 2020: Volume 6 Issue 2

Welcome to the Second 2020 Issue of The CLL Society Tribune

Dear Friends and Supporters of the CLL Society,

We are watching and waiting… now more than ever… and we want February 2020 back.

In this issue of the CLL Society Tribune, we share with you the viewpoints of writers from our CLL community who, just like you, were challenged by the sudden appearance of COVID-19, have had their mobility unexpectedly restricted, are cautious of the threat of infection at the door, are sheltering in place, miss their loved ones, long for a reliable directive from credible institutions to develop survival strategies for us, pray for a vaccine or an effective level of herd immunity… and are watching and waiting… now more than ever… for the “all clear”.

However, all of our writers are strong, articulate and coping. We hope that you find some delight in their spunk and resilience. We thank them for speaking with such lucidity.

This Tribune is focused on new concepts in immunotherapy as Dr. Koffman contributes explanatory articles on “What is immunotherapy?” and on bi-specific antibodies. Under Conference Coverage we further expand the focus on bi-specific antibodies as we feature the CLL Society’s ASH 2019 interview in which Drs. John Pagel and Stephen Schuster discuss the latest research on this topic. Did You Know outlines the Byzantine logic behind the nomenclature for monoclonal antibodies.

Additionally, our CLL expert Dr. Rick Furman, Chief Medical Officer Dr. Brian Koffman, Laboratory Scientist Dr. Susan Leclair, and Pharmacist Tom Henry have been hard at work, possibly breaking a record here by generously answering over 100 patient questions. Was one of these a burning question for you?

We are grateful to Therese Conlin for proofreading this Tribune.

We all want February 2020 back, but in the meantime, stay strong and wash your hands.

The CLL Society is invested in your long life.

Please invest in the long life of the CLL Society by supporting our work.

We are all in this together.

Patty Koffman, Co-Founder & Communications Director
CLL Society

Living Well With CLL

CLL and Returning to Work in the Time of COVID-19

By Doreen Zetterlund – Patient

What does that mean for CLLers, eager like everyone else, to get back out in the world and rejoin society?. … Read more

Mind Full or Mindful

By Farahana Surya Namskar

The uncertainties of life can be daunting and managing the unpredictability of our everyday is never easy.  Is there any real way to prepare ourselves? … Read more

Joy in the Time of Coronavirus

By Nancy Simpson – Patient

If you find yourself struggling during this pandemic, read on for some helpful advice. . … Read more

In Absentia and Let’s Pretend

By Kim Goldberg – Patient

Please enjoy these two poems by Kim! … Read more

Formulating the “At Risk Calculus”

By John Bush – Patient

The impact of COVID-19 and understanding what it means to be “at risk”. . … Read more

Ask & Tell

Reader Poll Results: COVID-19 Survey

During the first quarter of 2020, the CLL Society conducted a poll among readers of The CLL Society Tribune. There were 331 complete responses with 96% of the responses from patients and 4% from caregivers.  … See the results!

CLL Society Tribune Evaluation

In this edition of the CLL Society Tribune, instead of including an Ask & Tell Survey, we are asking for your feedback on the Tribune publication. How can we improve the quarterly newsletter? What sections are most popular with our readers? We hope that you enjoy the CLL Society Tribune and we want to hear your feedback. Please take a moment to complete this brief evaluation.. … Read more!

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Did You Know?

CLL Facts

By Brian Koffman, MDCM

Monoclonal antibodies (MAB) have revolutionized the treatment of CLL and other types of lymphoma as they provide a way of targeting a specific cell using the immune system. … Read more

The Basics


By Brian Koffman, MDCM

Learn more about how immunotherapies are a big part of present and future of CLL treatment.. … Read more

Beyond The Basics

Bispecific Antibodies: what are they and are they the future of treatment for CLL?

By Brian Koffman, MDCM

Immune therapy is a big piece of solving the puzzle of a CLL cure, and I believe bispecific antibodies may be a helpful puzzle piece. … Read more

Conference Coverage

ASH 2019: Dr. Schuster on Mosunetuzumab, a Bispecific Antibody in Poor Prognosis Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Patients

By Brian Koffman, MDCM

At ASH 2019 in Orlando, Dr. John Pagel interviewed Dr. Stephen Schuster about the powerful results in a phase 1 trial of mosunetuzumab, a bispecific antibody. … Watch The Interview

Ask The Doctor

Questions submitted by readers and answered by our CLL Society experts

By Richard Furman, MD

Dr. Richard Furman of Weill-Cornell Medical College answers readers’ questions submitted to the CLL Society…Read more

Ask The Pharmacist

Questions submitted by readers and answered by our CLL Society experts

By Thomas E Henry III, MBA, RPh, CPh

Thomas E Henry III, MBA, RPh, CPh from Burlington Consulting Associates answers readers’ pharmacy questions submitted to the CLL Society…Read more

Ask The Lab Scientist

Questions submitted by readers and answered by experts in the field

By Susan J. Leclair, PhD, CLS (NCA)

Susan J. Leclair from University of Massachusetts Dartmouth answers readers’ lab scientist questions submitted to the CLL Society…Read more

CLL Tribune is looking for your contribution including articles, storytelling, poems, drawings, or other creative mediums. Please share!

Email support@cllsociety.org with your interest!

NEW IN 2020!

Submit your stories and questions regarding Measurable Residual Disease (MRD) and CAR-T Therapies for our Q3 and Q4 Special Edition Tribune’s to support@cllsociety.org!

The CLL Society Tribune is made possible in part by grant support from AbbVie, Genentech, and Astra Zeneca


The CLL Society does not provide medical advice or endorsements. Unless explicitly stated otherwise, all content in the CLL Tribune is the opinion or information of its author, not the CLL Society. This newsletter is for reference and educational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice. We do not guarantee the accuracy of any of the materials. Always contact your own doctor or other professional healthcare provider if you have any questions concerning your or your family’s health. Everyone’s circumstances are different.