New Mesothelioma Clinical Trial Will Test Personalized Immunotherapy

mesothelioma clinical trial of dendritic cells

A Dutch company has recruited the first patients into a pivotal mesothelioma clinical trial of autologous dendritic cells. Dendritic cells are immune system cells that work as messengers. They help tell T cells to attack cancers like malignant mesothelioma. The new mesothelioma clinical trial will test using the patient’s own dendritic cells (autologous cells) as a way to keep cancer from coming back after mesothelioma treatment. Expanding Mesothelioma Treatment Options There is only one approved treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma. This “standard of care” treatment is chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) and cisplatin. Although most mesothelioma patients receive this treatment, very few live longer than a year after diagnosis. A Netherlands-based company called Amphera is trying to change those odds. Its … Continue reading New Mesothelioma Clinical Trial Will Test Personalized Immunotherapy »

Patients with Impaired Kidneys Could Still Take Alimta for Mesothelioma, Study Finds

Alimta for mesothelioma is kidney patients

New research in the Netherlands suggests that patients who would not normally be prescribed Alimta for mesothelioma could still benefit from the gold standard mesothelioma treatment. The key is an alternate dosing strategy. Alimta is a powerful drug that works by blocking a molecule needed for cell replication. Right now, doctors do not recommend Alimta for mesothelioma in people with poor kidney function. But Dutch pharmacology experts now say it is possible to adjust the dosing to make Alimta safer for these mesothelioma patients. Alimta for Mesothelioma: Proper Dosing is Key The FDA approved Alimta for mesothelioma in 2004. Alimta (pemetrexed) is still the only drug approved for the treatment of malignant mesothelioma. It has also been approved to treat … Continue reading Patients with Impaired Kidneys Could Still Take Alimta for Mesothelioma, Study Finds »

Chemotherapy During Mesothelioma Surgery: Is it Dangerous?

chemotherapy during mesothelioma surgery

A new study finds that chemotherapy during mesothelioma surgery does not raise the risk for complications. That could be good news for pleural mesothelioma patients who want to keep cancer at bay as long as possible. A group of Indian doctors compared the cases of thoracic cancer patients who had surgery with or without intraoperative chemotherapy. Only one of the “surgery + chemotherapy” patients developed a serious complication. Patients in this group also lived longer than those who did not receive intraoperative chemotherapy. When Do Doctors Use Chemotherapy During Mesothelioma Surgery? The two primary types of mesothelioma surgery are extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) or lung-sparing pleurectomy/decortication (P/D). Patients often have chemotherapy prior to surgery to shrink their mesothelioma tumor. Many have … Continue reading Chemotherapy During Mesothelioma Surgery: Is it Dangerous? »

Conservative Surgery Leads to Better Mesothelioma Survival After Recurrence

mesothelioma survival

Mesothelioma survival after recurrence may be better with lung-preserving P/D surgery than with more radical EPP. Japanese researchers recently analyzed the cases of 44 mesothelioma patients who underwent either EPP or P/D. It took about the same amount of time for mesothelioma tumors to start growing again, no matter what type of surgery the patient had. The difference was in survival. Both overall survival and mesothelioma survival after recurrence were longer in the P/D patients. EPP vs. P/D: The Ongoing Debate Mesothelioma surgeons around the world are still divided about which type of mesothelioma surgery is best. On one hand, extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) removes more diseased tissue, including a lung. Some say this improves the odds of long term mesothelioma … Continue reading Conservative Surgery Leads to Better Mesothelioma Survival After Recurrence »

PARP Inhibitors Could Enhance Immunotherapy Response in Mesothelioma

mesothelioma immunotherapy response

A new study suggests that drugs known as PARP inhibitors may enhance immunotherapy response in mesothelioma patients. According to a report published in the Journal of Clinical Investigations, PARP inhibitors worked especially well in cancers with mutations in their DNA repair genes. Some malignant mesothelioma patients have mutated DNA repair genes. In these patients, a PARP inhibitor may modify immunotherapy response, making drugs like Keytruda work better. How PARP Impacts Immunotherapy Response PARP stands for poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase. It represents a family of proteins involved in a number of cellular processes, including DNA repair. PARP is also involved in apoptosis, or programmed cell death. Olaparib (Lynparza) is an example of a PARP inhibitor. PARP inhibitors attack tumors that already have … Continue reading PARP Inhibitors Could Enhance Immunotherapy Response in Mesothelioma »

Cancer Centers May Not Manage Mesothelioma Symptoms Adequately, Study Finds

manage mesothelioma symptoms

UK researchers say the number of patients receiving palliative care to manage mesothelioma symptoms may be lagging behind the need. Nottingham University conducted a needs assessment of more than 700 patients over two years. Seventy percent of patients with pleural mesothelioma or another thoracic cancer completed a questionnaire shortly after diagnosis. Their results revealed a high unmet need for palliation to manage mesothelioma symptoms and those of other thoracic malignancies. How Does Palliative Care Help Manage Mesothelioma Symptoms? Palliative care is any kind of care that helps patients manage mesothelioma symptoms. These can be physical symptoms like breathing difficulty or fatigue. Or they can be psychological symptoms like fear and worry. Palliative care to manage mesothelioma symptoms can include things … Continue reading Cancer Centers May Not Manage Mesothelioma Symptoms Adequately, Study Finds »

Predicting Thyroid Disease After Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma

thyroid disease after imminotherapy

Researchers in Italy say it is possible to predict which mesothelioma patients are likely to develop thyroid disease after immunotherapy. They are advising their colleagues to use the technique for better management of malignant mesothelioma. Immune checkpoint inhibitors like Keytruda are improving the outlook for people with asbestos cancer. But immunotherapy is not without risk. Certain people are prone to develop thyroid disease after immunotherapy. If doctors know ahead of time which mesothelioma patients are at risk, they can be better prepared to manage problems later.   Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors and Thyroid Disease after Immunotherapy Pleural mesothelioma is extremely difficult to treat. Immune checkpoint inhibitors have given many mesothelioma patients new hope. Recent studies suggest that some of these drugs … Continue reading Predicting Thyroid Disease After Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma »

Staging of Mesothelioma Could Change with Discovery of New Lymph Nodes

Staging of mesothelioma in surgery

A recent discovery at the University of Maryland could dramatically change how doctors handle the staging of malignant pleural mesothelioma. More accurate staging could lead to better mesothelioma treatment outcomes and longer survival. More than three quarters of people diagnosed with mesothelioma have the pleural variety. Pleural mesothelioma is the deadliest form of asbestos cancer. Most patients do not live longer than 18 months, even with aggressive treatment. Cancer staging is the process doctors use to determine how advanced the cancer is. Staging of mesothelioma is important because it directly impacts treatment decisions. But staging of mesothelioma – just like diagnosis and treatment – can be difficult. Lymph Nodes May Help in Staging of Mesothelioma The discovery was made by … Continue reading Staging of Mesothelioma Could Change with Discovery of New Lymph Nodes »

Mesothelioma Research Demonstrates Power of Intrapleural Immunotherapy

X-ray showing location of intrapleural immunotherapy

New metadata suggests that intrapleural immunotherapy is a powerful, targeted way to treat malignant pleural mesothelioma.   Pleural mesothelioma is a deadly cancer of the lining around the lungs. It is caused by asbestos exposure and is notoriously difficult to treat. Now, a new study suggests that delivering immunotherapy treatments directly into the pleural space where mesothelioma tumors form may help these drugs work even better. What is Intrapleural Immunotherapy? Immunotherapy treatments harness the immune system to help fight cancer. Immunotherapy works alone or in combination with other treatments like chemotherapy or surgery. Many researchers and doctors believe that immunotherapy is the future of mesothelioma treatment. Intrapleural immunotherapy is a more targeted way to deliver these cancer-fighting messengers. It does … Continue reading Mesothelioma Research Demonstrates Power of Intrapleural Immunotherapy »

Adjuvant Radiotherapy for Mesothelioma Extends Survival

radiotherapy mesothelioma patient

The largest study ever conducted on adjuvant radiotherapy for mesothelioma shows that it can help patients live longer. Pleural mesothelioma is a rare cancer that tends to be highly resistant to standard treatments. Doctors usually have to use a combination of treatments to attack it. These may include chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgery, and/or immunotherapy. But there are still many questions about what combination of therapies to use and in what order. Adjuvant radiotherapy for mesothelioma is radiation delivered prior to surgery. Now, radiation oncology researchers in Texas say this approach can extend mesothelioma survival. Killing Mesothelioma Cells with Radiation Mesothelioma cells are hard to kill. Chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) and cisplatin is the most common treatment. But mesothelioma tumors usually start … Continue reading Adjuvant Radiotherapy for Mesothelioma Extends Survival »

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