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Breaking Down Mesothelioma: Diagnosis and Treatment Options

Breaking Down Mesothelioma: Diagnosis and Treatment Options

An international team of scientists from India, Malaysia, and Indonesia published an overview of the diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma.

Their report was published in the scientific journal Frontiers in Oncology.

Understanding Mesothelioma Diagnosis and Treatment

Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive tumor that grows in the lining of certain body cavities. It usually happens in the chest, abdomen, or around the heart.

Mesothelioma is caused by exposure to asbestos, a harmful substance that was once used in many industries. Even though asbestos is now banned in many places, the number of mesothelioma cases is still increasing.

Diagnosing mesothelioma is challenging because it can look like more common diseases. To diagnose mesothelioma, doctors often use imaging tests like X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and PET scans. They might also use biopsies and blood tests.

A Collaborative Effort to Conquer Mesothelioma

Treatment options usually include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy. Most treatments available today are not very effective. The average life expectancy after diagnosis is only around 10 to 12 months.

To improve the diagnosis of mesothelioma, scientists have been trying to understand what causes this disease within the body. One pathway being studied is the “hippo signaling pathway”, which is related to certain genetic changes that contribute to the development of mesothelioma.

Scientists are also looking for better ways to treat mesothelioma. One way is by exploring cancer vaccines. This type of treatment tries to get the body’s immune system to attack cancer cells. Some small studies have shown that some cancer vaccines can be safe and effective, but larger studies are needed.

Another treatment that scientists are studying is called adoptive T-cell treatment. This is a type of immunotherapy that boosts a person’s T cells to be better at destroying cancer cells. A version of adoptive T-cell treatment called CAR-T cell therapy has been effective at treating relapsed leukemia and lymphoma.

Scientists are doing a lot of interesting and ground-breaking research in ways to improve the diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma. With any luck, some of these new ideas will improve the outlook for patients with this disease.


Sahu RK, Ruhi S, Jeppu AK, et al. Malignant mesothelioma tumours: molecular pathogenesis, diagnosis, and therapies accompanying clinical studies. Front Oncol. 2023;13:1204722. Published 2023 Jul 4. doi:10.3389/fonc.2023.1204722. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10353315/

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