New Data Suggest a Mesothelioma Blood Test is Possible

A new technology that looks for genetic material from cancer cells in the blood could open the door to the fastest, easiest way yet to diagnose early malignant pleural mesothelioma. The test, which has already shown potential for early detection of lung cancer, was developed by a California-based life sciences company called GRAIL. GRAIL-funded researchers shared the data on the test at the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting this summer in Chicago. The results are part of the preliminary data from the company’s ongoing Circulating Cell-Free Genome Atlas study, a huge study on cancer diagnosis that aims to enroll 15,000 people (70 percent with cancer and 30 percent without) from 141 sites in the US and Canada. “We’re … Continue reading New Data Suggest a Mesothelioma Blood Test is Possible »

Lung Fluid Proteins Could be Key to Earlier Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Australian researchers say proteins found in lung fluid could hold the key to diagnosing pleural mesothelioma months or even years before a tumor is visible on imaging scans. Proteins function as communication devices in the body, directing all sorts of critical cellular processes, including the processes that tell cancer cells to begin replicating at a higher rate than normal cells. Scientists at Flinders University, one of the world’s leaders in mesothelioma research, wondered if the proteins that help give rise to malignant pleural mesothelioma could be found in pleural effusions and used as biomarkers to identify the cancer earlier. Looking for Mesothelioma Biomarkers in Lung Fluid In a new study published in the Journal of Proteomics, the team notes that … Continue reading Lung Fluid Proteins Could be Key to Earlier Mesothelioma Diagnosis »

Mesothelioma Genetic “Fingerprint” Could Impact Compensation

A new report suggests that it may be possible to verify that a case of lung cancer or malignant mesothelioma was caused by exposure to asbestos. The key may lie in tiny cellular structures called  microRNAs. If the microRNA asbestos profile can be verified, it could have a significant impact on work-related compensation for pleural mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer. The Molecular “Fingerprint” of Mesothelioma? MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding molecules of RNA that play a key role in the regulation of gene expression in cells. When these miRNAs are out of balance or “overexpressed”, the result can be cancer. By examining the miRNAs of mesothelioma patients, lung cancer patients, and healthy subjects, researchers at Marche Polytechnic University in Ancona, Italy … Continue reading Mesothelioma Genetic “Fingerprint” Could Impact Compensation »

Mesothelioma Surgery and the Threat of Opioid Addiction

A new study of opioid addiction among lung cancer patients may have implications for pleural mesothelioma patients who are considering surgery. The study, published this month in JAMA Oncology, finds that patients treated with more invasive surgical techniques are more likely to become chronic opioid users than those who have less invasive surgery. Opioids Are ‘Standard of Care’ for Lung Surgery Patients Researchers at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York studied the cases of nearly 4,000  people from the SEER Medicare database who had some type of surgery for non-small cell lung cancer, a type of cancer that shares many commonalities with the lung-related asbestos cancer, pleural mesothelioma. Some of the lung cancer patients studied underwent open thoracic surgery while others … Continue reading Mesothelioma Surgery and the Threat of Opioid Addiction »

Advanced Computer Program Might Pinpoint Mesothelioma Sooner

Scientists at New York University School of Medicine have successfully used a sophisticated computer program to distinguish between different types of lung cancer and identify the mutated genes behind them. The developers say the technology could open the door to faster diagnosis of other types of cancer, including malignant mesothelioma. Malignant Mesothelioma, the Asbestos Cancer Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a form of lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Instead of starting in the lung tissue like other types of lung cancer, it grows on the membrane that surrounds the lungs and can then spread to the lungs and other organs. There is no cure and the prognosis for mesothelioma is usually poor. As with most types of cancer, earlier diagnosis … Continue reading Advanced Computer Program Might Pinpoint Mesothelioma Sooner »

Pleural Mesothelioma Risk: Genes and Exposure Both Play a Role

When it comes to the development of malignant pleural mesothelioma, your job and your relatives both appear to play critical roles. A new study in the European Journal of Cancer points to the interplay between environment and genetics in the development of the asbestos cancer. The study shows, once again, just how destructive asbestos can be to human health. Analyzing Mesothelioma Incidence Among Swedes The new research used data from the Swedish Family-Cancer Database, which includes all Swedes born after 1931 and their biological parents – a total of 16.1 million people, including 2.3 million cancer patients. After analyzing the data on all people with pleural mesothelioma, the researchers determined that those who worked around asbestos were more than three … Continue reading Pleural Mesothelioma Risk: Genes and Exposure Both Play a Role »

Telomere Length May Be Key to Earlier Detection of Pleural Mesothelioma

Japanese pathologists have a new theory that may lead to earlier detection and better outcomes for people with malignant pleural mesothelioma. Researchers led by the International University of Health and Welfare in Tokyo say exposure to asbestos appears to shorten the telomeres that protect the ends of DNA strands. The discovery could give doctors another way to diagnose malignant mesothelioma in time to implement more effective treatments. What are Telomeres? Telomeres are the caps on the end of each strand of DNA. According to Telomere Activation Sciences, telomeres function like the plastic tips on the ends of shoelaces. Like those tips, telomeres help protect chromosomes from becoming frayed and damaged. When DNA is damaged, normal cellular processes are disrupted and … Continue reading Telomere Length May Be Key to Earlier Detection of Pleural Mesothelioma »

Hundreds of Mesothelioma Deaths Predicted for Taiwan

Taiwanese cancer researchers say a total asbestos ban is “urgently needed” to help stem the tide of pleural mesothelioma cases predicted in the next 30 years. While the incidence of malignant mesothelioma has finally begun to level off in some countries, its incidence worldwide continues to grow. Taiwan is just one example of a country where mesothelioma rates, as well as the rates of other asbestos-related diseases (ARDs), are expected to keep climbing for at least another couple of years. Even after 2020, the authors of a new mesothelioma study say the disease will continue to be a problem for decades, highlighting the need for Taiwan to implement a total asbestos ban and devote more resources to mesothelioma screening, diagnosis, … Continue reading Hundreds of Mesothelioma Deaths Predicted for Taiwan »

Lung Fluid Tests May Lead to Earlier Mesothelioma Diagnosis

Using the free-floating cancer cells present in lung-fluid to diagnose malignant mesothelioma may lead to earlier detection and better outcomes. That is the conclusion of cancer researchers at Stockholm’s Karolinska University Hospital. The team’s goal was to evaluate the established criteria for cytopathological diagnosis of mesothelioma, i.e. diagnosis using cells found in fluid (effusions) instead of cells from a tissue biopsy. In a newly published article in the Archives of Pathological and Laboratory Medicine, the researchers observe, “Despite the difficulties in recognizing malignant cells present in those early effusions, they are often the first available biologic material for diagnosis.” Diagnosing Pleural  Mesothelioma Malignant pleural mesothelioma, a rare but fast-growing cancer associated with asbestos exposure, is notoriously difficult to diagnose. Diagnosis … Continue reading Lung Fluid Tests May Lead to Earlier Mesothelioma Diagnosis »

Penn Surgeons “Light Up” Tumors to Boost Mesothelioma Survival

University of Pennsylvania surgeons are experimenting with a new technology that could vastly improve survival for patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma by ensuring that more of their cancer can be  removed. Complete resection of mesothelioma tumors can be the difference between life and death; even a few cancer cells left behind can quickly grow into new tumors. But macroscopic complete resection, as it is called, is not easy. Not only are mesothelioma tumors irregularly-shaped and located close to critical organs like the lungs and heart, but surgeons say it is often hard to distinguish tiny metastatic tumors from inflammation or scar tissue. In addition, traditional scanning techniques like PET can’t usually show nodules smaller than a centimeter and can’t distinguish … Continue reading Penn Surgeons “Light Up” Tumors to Boost Mesothelioma Survival »

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