Ofev Fails to Boost Mesothelioma Survival in New Study

In the quest to develop new, more effective first-line treatments for malignant pleural mesothelioma, it now looks like Ofev (nintedanib) is out of the running. Phase III results of the LUME-Meso mesothelioma trial are in and they contain some disappointing news for mesothelioma patients and for the drug’s developer, Boehringer Ingelheim. The news is especially disappointing since the results of the Phase II portion of the trial, released last year, looked promising. At that time, researchers reported a survival gain of more than 5 months among the Ofev-treated mesothelioma patients and progression-free survival of four months. But further research did not support those results, as investigators announced to the world’s lung cancer experts at the IASLC 19th World Lung Cancer … Continue reading Ofev Fails to Boost Mesothelioma Survival in New Study »

Old Drug May Breath New Life Into Mesothelioma Radiotherapy

Researchers at the University of Ohio may have found a way to make radiation therapy more effective for people with mesothelioma and other types of solid tumors. They’re using a muscle relaxant approved in the 1800s to increase the level of oxygen in cancer cells and make them more susceptible to the damaging effects of radiation. The research could have wide-ranging implications, especially for patients fighting treatment-resistant malignancies like pleural mesothelioma. The Limitations of Radiation for Pleural Mesothelioma Mesothelioma is a fast-growing cancer associated with asbestos exposure that occurs on the membranes around internal organs. Although the irregular shape and tricky location of mesothelioma tumors can make them difficult to treat with radiotherapy, advanced targeting techniques are making it more … Continue reading Old Drug May Breath New Life Into Mesothelioma Radiotherapy »

New Study Points to Benefits of IMRT for Mesothelioma Treatment

There is more evidence that mesothelioma patients who have lung sparing surgery can live longer if it’s followed up with highly targeted radiation therapy. In the first study to come out of Israel on the subject, a team of oncologists, pulmonologists, radiation oncologists, and thoracic surgeons at Rabin Medicine Center in Petah Tikva say intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) is safe and effective for slowing down the growth of pleural mesothelioma tumors. The Challenge of Radiotherapy for Mesothelioma The irregularity of malignant mesothelioma tumors makes them difficult to treat with standard external beam radiotherapy without damaging healthy tissue and causing serious side effects. This is particularly problematic in patients who still have both lungs, either because they were not good … Continue reading New Study Points to Benefits of IMRT for Mesothelioma Treatment »

Radiofrequency Ablation for Recurrent Mesothelioma: A New Treatment Option?

A procedure normally used to help alleviate pain has been used to successfully stop a case of recurrent malignant pleural mesothelioma in Japan. Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) uses electrical energy delivered through a thin, hollow needle to heat and destroy cancer cells. Most of the time, this technology is used to destroy small tumors or a treat small area of cancer to alleviate symptoms such as pain or discomfort. But thoracic surgeons at the Hyogo College of Medicine in Hyogo, Japan say their new case study suggests that the procedure should also be considered as a definitive treatment — especially for mesothelioma patients for whom surgery is not a viable option. Complex Mesothelioma Case Drives RFA Decision In a new report … Continue reading Radiofrequency Ablation for Recurrent Mesothelioma: A New Treatment Option? »

Radiotherapy LIkely to Play a Bigger Role in Future Mesothelioma Therapy

New research suggests that radiotherapy is likely to play a larger role in the multi-modal treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma in the future, supporting and enhancing treatments such as surgery and immunotherapy. Radiation scrambles the DNA inside cancer cells, interrupting their life cycle and making replication impossible. If it were possible to irradiate only mesothelioma cells without affecting the surrounding healthy tissue, radiotherapy might even be able to cure cancers like mesothelioma. But as the authors of a new study published in the Journal of Thoracic Disease point out, until recently, radiotherapy has been of limited use in the treatment of mesothelioma because it hasn’t been precise enough. Thanks to new technology, that is changing. Why Mesothelioma is Hard to … Continue reading Radiotherapy LIkely to Play a Bigger Role in Future Mesothelioma Therapy »

Electricity-based Mesothelioma Treatment Moves a Step Closer to FDA Approval

Calling it an “extremely promising therapeutic option” that demonstrates “an impressive extension of median overall survival”, researchers testing a new type of pleural mesothelioma treatment announced the final results of their phase II clinical trial this week. Tumor Treating Fields, a creation of Jersey-based Novocare, are alternating electric fields that destabilize critical proteins, disrupting mesothelioma tumor cell division and killing them. As Surviving Mesothelioma first reported in April, early tests of the technology looked promising. But the final results of the STELLAR phase 2 mesothelioma clinical trial, released this week, are even better than expected. Researchers say Tumor Treating Fields may even become part of the new standard of care for pleural mesothelioma.   Tumor Treating Fields Gain Momentum in … Continue reading Electricity-based Mesothelioma Treatment Moves a Step Closer to FDA Approval »

Mobile App Could Help Mesothelioma Patients Find New Treatments

Mesothelioma patients now have a high-tech new way to connect with cutting edge mesothelioma treatments around the world – for a price. A pair of Harvard-trained oncologists have just rolled out a new app that promises to connect people who have cancers like pleural mesothelioma with treatments and clinical trials that even their physicians may not be aware of. The app, called Driver, is being rolled out this week in the US and China in the wake of a trial run with a hundred people over the past year. How Might Driver Help Mesothelioma Patients? One of the biggest obstacles faced by patients diagnosed with rare cancers like pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma is getting the most up-tp-date information about potential … Continue reading Mobile App Could Help Mesothelioma Patients Find New Treatments »

Mesothelioma Survival Improves with Post-Surgery Radiation

Pleural mesothelioma patients who undergo radiotherapy after their surgery tend to live longer than those whose treatment plan does not include radiation. Unfortunately, only a small percentage of patients who could stand to benefit from this treatment actually get it. Researchers at Houston Methodist Hospital, Baylor, and The University of Texas have come to that conclusion after analyzing data from the National Cancer Database on nearly 25,000 patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma from 2004 to 2013. It was the largest study of adjuvant radiotherapy for mesothelioma ever conducted. Radiotherapy in Mesothelioma Treatment Although radiotherapy is not routinely used in mesothelioma treatment, when it is used, it is typically either palliative as a way to relieve symptoms, or as an add-on … Continue reading Mesothelioma Survival Improves with Post-Surgery Radiation »

Drug-Coated Film May Prevent Mesothelioma Recurrence

Mesothelioma researchers in Italy have developed a new surgical technique with the potential to dramatically increase the odds of surviving malignant pleural mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive cancer that grows on the membranous tissue (pleura) surrounding the lungs. It is most common in people who have ever lived or worked in the presence of deadly asbestos dust.                       The new technique involves placing a drug-coated polymer film directly on the mesothelial surface after tumor-removal surgery as a way to prevent recurrent pleural mesothelioma. In a new article in the European Journal of Pharmaceutical Science, researchers at the University of Parma say the film “almost completely prevented tumor recurrence” in treated mice. Battling Recurrent Mesothelioma The typical treatment … Continue reading Drug-Coated Film May Prevent Mesothelioma Recurrence »

Nivolumab a ‘Rising Star’ for Malignant Mesothelioma Treatment?

There may be a new treatment option on the horizon for mesothelioma patients whose cancer has come back again after treatment. Researchers in the UK are even predicting that this drug could become the new standard of care for relapsed malignant mesothelioma. The drug is nivolumab, a PD-1 inhibitor sold under the brand name Opdivo. Already approved for the treatment of recurrent non-small cell lung cancer, nivolumab has been shown in recent clinical trials to reduce the size of mesothelioma tumors and may even extend mesothelioma survival. Opdivo in the News If you think you have been hearing more about nivolumab in the news lately, you are right. Laboratory results have suggested that this immunotherapy drug could be one of … Continue reading Nivolumab a ‘Rising Star’ for Malignant Mesothelioma Treatment? »

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