Defactinib Fails Again as a Maintenance Therapy for Mesothelioma

patient chemotherapy for mesothelioma

There has been another setback for a drug that showed promise as a maintenance therapy for mesothelioma. Defactinib is a focal adhesion kinase (FAK) inhibitor. FAK is a signaling pathway that allows stem cells to give rise to new cancer cells. The developers of defactinib hoped that FAK inhibition would help keep mesothelioma tumors from growing back after chemotherapy. But a team of international researchers has once again concluded that the drug does not work as a maintenance therapy for mesothelioma. In Search of a Maintenance Therapy for Mesothelioma Malignant pleural mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer that is very hard to treat. Standard chemotherapy drugs like pemetrexed, cisplatin, gemcitabine and vinorelbine can sometimes shrink tumors, but they usually come back. Doctors … Continue reading Defactinib Fails Again as a Maintenance Therapy for Mesothelioma »

Alimta May Extend Mesothelioma Survival as a Maintenance Therapy

T Scientists in Japan have just published details of a case they say could be pivotal to the treatment of intractable malignant pleural mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma is usually caused by exposure to asbestos and starts in the membrane around the lungs. Although there is no cure for mesothelioma, a chemotherapy combination of the platinum drug cisplatin and the anti-folate pemetrexed is considered to be the gold standard drug therapy. Unfortunately, many patients cannot tolerate high doses of cisplatin because of the danger of liver damage. But respiratory medicine specialists at Uji Tokushukai Medical Center in Japan say this problem may be tackled for some mesothelioma patients by continuing to give them pemetrexed. Dr. Takayuki Takeda and his team report the … Continue reading Alimta May Extend Mesothelioma Survival as a Maintenance Therapy »

Dendritic Cell Therapy for Mesothelioma: Can it Help Other Treatments Work Better?

dendritic cell therapy for mesothelioma

A new kind of mesothelioma treatment called dendritic cell therapy might make other types of treatments even more effective.  Right now, chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) is the only approved therapy for malignant mesothelioma. Many others are in the works. But so far, none of them extend the lives of mesothelioma patients by more than a few months.  Dendritic cell therapy for mesothelioma may be different. This novel treatment uses the patient’s own cells to jumpstart the immune system.  A Dutch company developed and is testing the new treatment. The data so far suggests that it could boost chemotherapy and help new drugs like Keytruda work better.  How Dendritic Cell Therapy Works Dendritic cells are immune system cells that function as … Continue reading Dendritic Cell Therapy for Mesothelioma: Can it Help Other Treatments Work Better? »

Immunotherapy Vaccine for Mesothelioma Shows Promise in Combination Treatment

immunotherapy vaccine for mesothelioma

A bacteria-based immunotherapy vaccine for mesothelioma may improve the odds of surviving the disease by boosting the effects of chemotherapy.  That is the word from the latest clinical trial of CRS-207 headed by researchers at the National Cancer Institute. Thirty-five inoperable patients received the immunotherapy vaccine for mesothelioma along with standard mesothelioma chemotherapy. Eighty-nine percent of them experienced either a full or partial response to the treatment combination.  CRS-207 Immunotherapy Vaccine for Mesothelioma CRS-207 is based on a modified version of Listeria monocytogenes. The bacterium is best known for causing the food borne illness Listeriosis. In CRS-207, the bacteria has been changed so it cannot make patients sick. The immunotherapy vaccine for mesothelioma uses the bacteria to trigger a powerful … Continue reading Immunotherapy Vaccine for Mesothelioma Shows Promise in Combination Treatment »

Immunotherapy Combo Shows Early Efficacy for Malignant Mesothelioma

AstraZeneca’s immunotherapy drug tremelimumab may still have a chance as a novel mesothelioma treatment, even though an international clinical trial completed last year found that it did not extend mesothelioma survival. In a new study published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, Italian researchers report that combining the monoclonal antibody with another drug called durvalumab “appeared active” as a second-line mesothelioma treatment with “a good safety profile”. Tremelimumab’s Rocky Start as a Mesothelioma Treatment Hopes were initially high for tremelimumab, a monoclonal antibody that works by binding to the protein CTLA-4 on the surface of white blood cells and preventing it from inhibiting the cells’ cancer-fighting power. The US even granted tremelimumab “orphan drug” status in 2015, a designation designed to … Continue reading Immunotherapy Combo Shows Early Efficacy for Malignant Mesothelioma »

Phenomenal Response to New Mesothelioma Immunotherapy Drug

There is some exciting news from the front lines of mesothelioma research this week. California scientists say they have dramatically improved the effectiveness of mesothelioma chemotherapy by pairing it with a an immunotherapy drug made of live bacteria. The University of California, San Francisco team presented their findings to other lung cancer experts at the international European Lung Cancer Conference in Switzerland earlier this week. Although most pleural mesothelioma patients will receive chemotherapy, only about three in ten of those patients will get any significant benefit from it. The the new research study appears to be changing those odds. Origins of Bacteria-based Mesothelioma Treatment Immunotherapy is a process of turning the body’s own defenses against cancer by making it more difficult … Continue reading Phenomenal Response to New Mesothelioma Immunotherapy Drug »

Ofev Shelved as a Treatment for Pleural Mesothelioma

Treatment for pleural mesothelioma

It is official – the VEGF inhibitor Ofev is out of the running as a treatment for pleural mesothelioma. Hopes had been high for this drug after initial results showed a survival advantage. For the last two years, Ofev (nintedanib) was the subject of a large, international clinical trial. But now the leaders of that trial have published their Phase III trial results in The Lancet: Respiratory Medicine. They show that Ofev did not extend survival and is not an effective treatment for pleural mesothelioma. Why Hopes Were High for Ofev Ofev is an oral medication that stops cancer cells from producing a protein called VEGF. VEGF promotes the growth of blood vessels that help mesothelioma tumors grow. VEGF may … Continue reading Ofev Shelved as a Treatment for Pleural Mesothelioma »

Three-Drug Combo May Be New Standard-of-Care for Mesothelioma Treatment

The standard of care for people with malignant pleural mesothelioma may be changing for the first time since pemetrexed (Alimta) was approved more than a decade ago. The 27 member cancer centers of National Comprehensive Cancer Network have amended their mesothelioma treatment guidelines to include the monoclonal antibody bevacizumab (Avastin) as part of first-line therapy for qualified mesothelioma patients. In a recent French study that received worldwide attention, bevacizumab was found to extend mesothelioma survival by 2.7 months when combined with the standard chemotherapy combination of pemetrexed (Alimta) and cisplatin. Although this extension may seem minimal, in a disease that is typically fatal within 4 to 18 months, it is significant. What is Bevacizumbab? Bevacizumab is a monoclonal antibody that inhibits … Continue reading Three-Drug Combo May Be New Standard-of-Care for Mesothelioma Treatment »

New Drug Regimen Produces “Perfect Response” in Advanced Mesothelioma Case

Just three months after a team of French oncologists published their findings on the mesothelioma survival benefits of adding the drug Avastin (bevacizumab) to standard mesothelioma chemotherapy, Chinese doctors claim they have found a way to further improve the results. The team says they were able to produce a “perfect response” in a 57-year-old man with advanced mesothelioma by following the three-drug chemotherapy combination with a maintenance dose of Alimta (pemetrexed). If their results can be verified in further tests, it could change the prognosis for thousands of mesothelioma patients around the world. Avastin’s Impact on Mesothelioma Outcomes In January 2016, results from the six-year Mesothelioma Avastin Cisplatin Pemetrexed Study (MAPS) were so positive that the French team testing the … Continue reading New Drug Regimen Produces “Perfect Response” in Advanced Mesothelioma Case »

Promising Early Results from Mesothelioma Vaccine Trial

Researchers studying a new immunotherapy vaccine for mesothelioma have released early findings from an ongoing clinical trial and the results are promising. CRS-207 is based on a genetically modified version of Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium normally associated with the food borne illness, Listeriosis. The drug was designed to induce a powerful immune response against cells that produce mesothelin, which includes mesothelioma and several other kinds of cancer. In a presentation at the 40th European Society for Medical Oncology in September, lead investigator Raffit Hassan, MD, of the National Cancer Institute said CRS-207 appears to be improving the odds of surviving mesothelioma in inoperable patients. “The data in this trial continue to be impressive in the front-line treatment of mesothelioma,” said … Continue reading Promising Early Results from Mesothelioma Vaccine Trial »

Get your free copy of
“Surviving Mesothelioma” Today!