Korean Cancer Doctors Embrace PIPAC for Mesothelioma

PIPAC for mesothelioma

Five out of ten Korean oncologists surveyed feel positive about using an aerosolized chemotherapy system called PIPAC for mesothelioma and other types of cancer. PIPAC stands for pressurized intraperitoneal aerosol chemotherapy. The system turns liquid chemotherapy drugs into a spray that can be applied with a nebulizer. It was developed to treat surface malignancies like peritoneal mesothelioma that can be hard to treat with standard methods.  PIPAC can be used in conjunction with mesothelioma surgery or by itself as either a palliative or curative treatment.  The technology is still very new. Many doctors have never used it. But research conducted by the Seoul National University College of Medicine shows Korean doctors are ready to embrace it. How Spray-on Chemotherapy Works … Continue reading Korean Cancer Doctors Embrace PIPAC for Mesothelioma »

“Remodeling” Mesothelioma Cells May Improve Responsiveness to Immunotherapy

Responsiveness to immunotherapy

Italian researchers are experimenting with the idea of remodeling mesothelioma cells from the inside out to improve their responsiveness to immunotherapy. Malignant mesothelioma is highly resistant to standard cancer treatments. Immunotherapy is widely considered to be one of the most hopeful new approaches to this cancer. But this approach works better for some people than it does for others.  The difference may lie in the genes. Scientists at University Hospital of Siena believe that manipulating the gene expression of mesothelioma cells could be the key to bolstering responsiveness to immunotherapy.  Mesothelioma, Genetics, and Responsiveness to Immunotherapy Immunotherapy is a method of treating disease by using the body’s natural immune response. This can mean trying to attract more immune cells to … Continue reading “Remodeling” Mesothelioma Cells May Improve Responsiveness to Immunotherapy »

Expert Says Malignant Mesothelioma Research ‘Turned a Corner’ in 2021

mesothelioma research

An internationally-known mesothelioma specialist says 2021 has been one of the best years yet for malignant mesothelioma research, giving patients and their families more reason than ever to be hopeful.  Hedy Lee Kindler, MD, is Director of the University of Chicago Medical Center’s Mesothelioma Program. In a commentary in JCO Oncology Practice, Dr. Kindler says the outlook for mesothelioma sufferers this year is “far brighter than it has been for a very long time.” Dr. Kindler points to several recent advances in malignant mesothelioma research and treatment as reasons for optimism. The FDA approved the second systemic therapy for mesothelioma in late 2020. This year saw five positive mesothelioma clinical trials.  Kindler says these advances suggest that the future may … Continue reading Expert Says Malignant Mesothelioma Research ‘Turned a Corner’ in 2021 »

Glucose Solution May Prevent Complication After Pleural Mesothelioma Surgery

pleural mesothelioma surgery

There is new evidence that a solution of hypertonic glucose can help correct persistent air leak –  a complication that sometimes occurs after major pleural mesothelioma surgery. Pleural mesothelioma affects the membrane that surrounds the lungs. Efforts to surgically separate a mesothelioma tumor from the surface of the lungs can damage the lungs.  When this damage causes air to seep out of the lungs into the chest cavity, it is an air leak. Some air leaks fix themselves within a few days. But when an air leak persists for more than 5 days, it can cause further complications and slow recovery after pleural mesothelioma surgery.  A team of thoracic oncologists in Milan, Italy say hypertonic glucose can help clear up … Continue reading Glucose Solution May Prevent Complication After Pleural Mesothelioma Surgery »

Chemotherapy Still Good First-Line Option for Unresectable Epithelioid Mesothelioma

unresectable epithelioid mesothelioma

A top mesothelioma expert says chemotherapy may still be the best first-line treatment for unresectable epithelioid mesothelioma, even though immunotherapy is an increasingly popular option. Chemotherapy has been the primary way to treat mesothelioma since 2004. This is when the FDA approved the drug Alimta (pemetrexed). Alimta remained the only systemic treatment for asbestos cancer until 2020. In 2020, the FDA approved a combination of the immunotherapy drugs ipilimumab (Yervoy) and nivolumab (Opdivo). But Dean Fennell, PhD, of the UK’s University of Leicester says chemotherapy is still a good choice for many unresectable epithelioid mesothelioma cases. A Better Version of Chemotherapy? Epithelioid mesothelioma is the most common subtype. It is also the most responsive to treatment. For the healthiest patients, … Continue reading Chemotherapy Still Good First-Line Option for Unresectable Epithelioid Mesothelioma »

New CAR-T Cell Therapy for Mesothelioma Circumvents Immune Suppression

CAR-T Cell Therapy

A new cancer treatment based on CAR-T cell therapy may have found a way to undermine a key protective mechanism in mesothelioma tumors. The treatment is called UCARTMESO. It is being developed by a French biopharmaceutical company called Cellectis. UCARTMESO targets cells that overexpress the protein mesothelin. It undermines some key genes in these cells preventing them from sending immune suppressive signals.  Immune suppressive elements in the area surrounding mesothelioma tumors have historically kept CAR-T cell therapy from working as well as it does for some other types of cancer.  But the developers of UCARTMESO say their approach may finally make CAR-T cell therapy a viable option for patients fighting asbestos cancer.  They presented their findings at the Society for … Continue reading New CAR-T Cell Therapy for Mesothelioma Circumvents Immune Suppression »

Surgery-Based Multimodal Treatment Improves Survival for Italian Mesothelioma Patients

surgery-based multimodal treatment

A new Italian report suggests that a surgery-based multimodal treatment approach to mesothelioma can help patients live longer with few serious side effects.  The new study comes from Careggi University Hospital in Florence. Thoracic oncologists tracked the outcomes of 12 of their mesothelioma patients since 2017. All of the patients had early-stage pleural mesothelioma of the epithelioid subtype. Results showed that none of them died within the first year after surgery-based multimodal treatment. More than half lived for at least three years.  These are considered very positive results for a cancer that often claims lives within months of diagnosis.  Understanding Surgery-Based Multimodal Treatment Some types of cancer can be successfully treated with just one type of therapy. Pleural mesothelioma is … Continue reading Surgery-Based Multimodal Treatment Improves Survival for Italian Mesothelioma Patients »

Immunotherapy Drug Durvalumab Shines in Most Recent Mesothelioma Trial

immunotherapy drug durvalumab

Another new study confirms what Johns Hopkins researchers have been banking on – that the immunotherapy drug durvalumab can make chemotherapy more effective for mesothelioma patients.  Durvalumab (IMFINZI) is an immune checkpoint inhibitor. It works by blocking the action of PD-1, a protein that mesothelioma cells use to protect themselves.  Researchers theorized that deactivating PD-1 with the immunotherapy drug durvalumab might make mesothelioma tumors more responsive to chemotherapy. The latest study results, published in Nature Medicine, suggest that they were right.  The findings could have implications for people around the world with inoperable malignant mesothelioma. How the Immunotherapy Drug Durvalumab Helps Fight Mesothelioma Durvalumab is one of several immune checkpoint inhibitors showing promise for mesothelioma in recent years. Keytruda (pembrolizumab) … Continue reading Immunotherapy Drug Durvalumab Shines in Most Recent Mesothelioma Trial »

Mesothelioma Surgical Decisions: New Method May Make Them Easier

mesothelioma surgical decisions

Cancer researchers in India and the UK have come up with a method for making better mesothelioma surgical decisions. The group focused on peritoneal mesothelioma, the second most common form of asbestos cancer. Peritoneal mesothelioma affects the membrane around the abdominal organs. It can spread throughout the abdomen.  Some peritoneal mesothelioma patients get good results with cytoreductive surgery. But success depends on a number of factors such as how far cancer has spread and where mesothelioma tumors are located. The new decision-making tool reminds doctors of five important factors to consider when making mesothelioma surgical decisions for the best outcomes. It is based on the acronym PAUSE. Peritoneal Mesothelioma and the Promise of CRS/HIPEC Malignant mesothelioma is an especially aggressive … Continue reading Mesothelioma Surgical Decisions: New Method May Make Them Easier »

New Treatment for Malignant Mesothelioma Kills Cancer ‘From the Inside Out’

new treatment for malignant mesothelioma

The University of Vermont is about to start a first-in-human trial of a new kind of treatment for malignant mesothelioma.  The new approach involves a drug called RSO-021. The drug works differently from other cancer therapies. It blocks the ability of cancer cells to manage their own waste products. It’s developers say the new treatment for malignant mesothelioma aims to kill cancer cells from the inside out.  The concept for RSO-021 was first developed at the University of Vermont. Scientists at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and the UK biotech company RS Oncology have tested the drug in mice with promising results.  Human trials of RSO-021 will start soon in the UK. US patients will be recruited in 2022.  … Continue reading New Treatment for Malignant Mesothelioma Kills Cancer ‘From the Inside Out’ »

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