Radiotherapy Outcomes in Mesothelioma Linked to Metabolism

radiotherapy outcomes

Italian researchers say metabolic markers may hold the key to predicting radiotherapy outcomes in people with mesothelioma. Metabolism is the process by which cells produce energy. Metabolism is necessary for cancer cells to live. Mesothelioma cells metabolize faster than healthy cells.  Radiotherapy affects cancer cell metabolism. A new study shows that compounds produced during metabolism may impact radiotherapy outcomes. It suggests that a patient’s metabolic profile – or metabolome – could help doctors choose good candidates for radiation. Radical Hemithoracic Radiotherapy and Mesothelioma  Pleural mesothelioma is a rare lung-related cancer caused by asbestos exposure. There is no cure for mesothelioma. Most mesothelioma patients have a combination of therapies. Radiation is one of the methods doctors use to help slow its … Continue reading Radiotherapy Outcomes in Mesothelioma Linked to Metabolism »

Standard Biomarkers for Pleural Mesothelioma “Not Useful” for Immunotherapy

Biomarkers for pleural mesothelioma

Two of the most important biomarkers for pleural mesothelioma are not much help when it comes to tracking response to immunotherapy. Top mesothelioma researchers at the University of Pennsylvania drew that conclusion based on data from a cohort of 58 patients.  They focused on two primary biomarkers for pleural mesothelioma: SMRP and fibulin-3. Doctors use both of these markers to diagnose and plan treatment for mesothelioma.  The study confirms the correlation between these markers and mesothelioma tumor volume. But the Penn Medicine researchers say these biomarkers of pleural mesothelioma were “not useful” for measuring immunotherapy response. Understanding Biomarkers for Pleural Mesothelioma A biomarker is a substance produced by the body that indicates a biological process or condition. Most mesothelioma biomarkers … Continue reading Standard Biomarkers for Pleural Mesothelioma “Not Useful” for Immunotherapy »

Epithelioid Subtype Leads to Longer Survival Regardless of Treatment

epithelioid subtype

Danish researchers say people with the epithelioid subtype of pleural mesothelioma tend to live longer than those with other subtypes, even if they don’t receive treatment.  The study is the latest to confirm what prior research suggests: that epithelial mesothelioma is more survivable than other subtypes.  In the newest report, mesothelioma patients with the epithelioid subtype lived longer, even when they were not good candidates for curative treatment. Mesothelioma Subtypes and Symptoms Pleural mesothelioma is a fast-growing cancer on the membrane around the lungs. Exposure to asbestos is the primary cause of mesothelioma.  There are three main mesothelioma subtypes. They are the epithelioid subtype, the sarcomatoid subtype, and the biphasic subtype. Epithelioid mesothelioma is the most common subtype. Sarcomatoid is … Continue reading Epithelioid Subtype Leads to Longer Survival Regardless of Treatment »

Autoimmune Disease and Mesothelioma: Will it Impact Survival?

autoimmune disease

A new lung cancer study suggests that having an autoimmune disease will not necessarily lead to shorter cancer survival. This could be good news for pleural mesothelioma patients suffering from autoimmune disorders. Pleural mesothelioma is a lung-related disease that has many characteristics in common with lung cancer.  The new study comes from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. It included 177 lung cancer patients who also had immune diseases. Doctors compared their survival with a control group of lung cancer patients.   They determined that having an autoimmune disease did not negatively impact lung cancer survival. In fact, some of those patients lived longer than those with healthy immune systems.  What is an Autoimmune Disease? An autoimmune disease is … Continue reading Autoimmune Disease and Mesothelioma: Will it Impact Survival? »

Predicting Mesothelioma Survival with Routine Clinical Tests

predicting mesothelioma survival

UK researchers say predicting mesothelioma survival does not have to be complicated. Their new study shows routine doctor’s office tests may be just as accurate as more complex metrics. The study appears in the new issue of the BMJ Open Respiratory Research journal. It involved 100 patients with malignant mesothelioma over a four-year period.  The team compared treatment outcomes among these patients with their results on basic health tests. More often than not, these tests correctly predicted their prognosis. The researchers say simplifying the process of predicting mesothelioma survival could help doctors and patients make better treatment decisions.  Prognostic Indicators in Asbestos Cancer Malignant pleural mesothelioma is an uncommon but lethal form of membrane cancer. Patients who get it usually … Continue reading Predicting Mesothelioma Survival with Routine Clinical Tests »

Breakthroughs in Mesothelioma in 2020

breakthroughs in mesothelioma

In spite of a global pandemic, there were some major breakthroughs in mesothelioma in 2020 that made the year a hopeful one for people fighting asbestos cancer. Malignant mesothelioma is the most serious illness caused by exposure to asbestos fibers.  Mesothelioma is still not curable. But researchers have made major breakthroughs in mesothelioma diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment this year.  Mesothelioma Treatment Advances Mesothelioma treatment saw the biggest breakthroughs in mesothelioma in 2020. The FDA approved the first systemic treatment for mesothelioma since 2004. That was the year that Alimta (pemetrexed) received approval.  They approved a combination of the immunotherapy drugs Opdivo and Yervoy. Yervoy helps activate and proliferate T-cells. Opdivo helps existing T-cells discover the mesothelioma  tumor. The patients who … Continue reading Breakthroughs in Mesothelioma in 2020 »

High PD-L1 Levels Could Be Bad News for Mesothelioma Surgery Candidates

Yet another new study has found a link between PD-L1 levels and mesothelioma survival – this time in people slated to have surgery for malignant pleural mesothelioma.  PD-L1 stands for programmed cell death ligand 1. It is a protein expressed by some cancer cells that helps them avoid immune system attack.  Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine are the latest to show that higher PD-L1 levels may lead to a worse mesothelioma prognosis. Their study focused specifically on mesothelioma surgery candidates.  The results were published recently in the Annals of Thoracic Surgery.  PD-L1 Levels and Mesothelioma Prognosis Even healthy people express some amount of PD-L1. Its job is to suppress the part of the immune system that attacks foreign tissues. … Continue reading High PD-L1 Levels Could Be Bad News for Mesothelioma Surgery Candidates »

Age is a Factor in Mesothelioma Survival After Surgery

mesothelioma survival after surgery

Age appears to be one of the biggest predictors of mesothelioma survival after surgery. This holds true no matter which kind of surgery a patient has.  A new study from the University of Pennsylvania compared the outcomes of more than 2,000 mesothelioma surgery patients. They compared them by surgical type. They also compared their survival with that of people who did not have surgery. Mesothelioma survival after surgery was consistently longer for younger patients. The risk of death within a few months went up a little bit with each year of age. The news could help patients and doctors make better treatment decisions. Surgical Procedures for Mesothelioma Operating on mesothelioma patients is controversial. Mesothelioma tumors are irregularly shaped and difficult to … Continue reading Age is a Factor in Mesothelioma Survival After Surgery »

Mesothelioma Staging: Laparoscopy May Find Tumors PET-CT Misses

mesothelioma staging

Cancer researchers at Baylor College of Medicine say diagnostic laparoscopy (DL) improves the accuracy of pleural mesothelioma staging prior to surgery. It is especially valuable for patients with cancer in both the chest and abdomen. Staging is a way for doctors to determine how widespread cancer is. Accurate staging is critical for the best surgical outcomes. For the right patients, mesothelioma surgery can be a life saver.  Many mesothelioma patients undergo PET/CT as part of the staging process. But the Baylor study suggests that adding a tool called a laparoscope to the process may find tumors that PET-CT misses. What is Mesothelioma Staging? Malignant mesothelioma is a type of cancer that grows on internal membranes. It usually occurs on the … Continue reading Mesothelioma Staging: Laparoscopy May Find Tumors PET-CT Misses »

Long-Term Mesothelioma Survival: Follow-up is Critical

long-term mesothelioma survival

A newly published French case report is a reminder that long-term mesothelioma survival requires long-term follow-up. The case comes from Aix-Marseille University in Marseille. In the Annals of Medicine and Surgery, doctors wrote about a man who survived mesothelioma for 14 years. In all that time, his cancer did not progress. The situation is unusual for mesothelioma. The life expectancy of most mesothelioma patients is about 18 months. Prolonged survival is two years or more. But the authors of the new report say their case shows that long-term mesothelioma survival is not impossible with the right approach. Treatment for Malignant Mesothelioma Malignant mesothelioma usually occurs in people who have lived or worked around asbestos. Many do not know they have … Continue reading Long-Term Mesothelioma Survival: Follow-up is Critical »

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