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Genomic Experts Report Most Complete Picture of Mesothelioma to Date

Genomic Experts Report Most Complete Picture of Mesothelioma to DateAustralian and American genomic experts have completed a key step in improving the treatment of pleural mesothelioma. A new study gives results from a large study of malignant pleural mesothelioma

Pleural mesothelioma is a type of cancer that develops on the thin layer of tissue that covers the lungs and chest wall. Asbestos causes mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases. Asbestos was used in thousands of industrial, commercial, construction, automotive, and consumer products. Pleural mesothelioma occurs in about 2,000 people in the United States every year.

Scientists at the National Centre for Asbestos-Related Disease have taken a dramatic leap forward in the understanding of pleural mesothelioma.

DNA Genes Impact Personalized Treatment Plans

Previous genomic studies of malignant pleural mesothelioma were limited. In this new study, genomic experts used whole genome sequencing combined with new immune features. This combination will inform future clinical trials in malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Genomics is a new branch of medicine. It involves using a patient’s genetic information to create personalized treatment plans. Oncogenomics is the application of genetic information to mesothelioma diagnosis and treatment. Whole-genome sequencing (WGS) is a method for analyzing a patient’s entire genomic DNA.

Genes impact mesothelioma survival in a variety of ways. Tumor suppressor genes are supposed to help keep tumors from forming. People with mutations on these genes may be more likely to get malignant mesothelioma.

This project analyzed over 229 genetic samples. They used a combination of WGS and other genetic analyses to describe the tumor microenvironment.

There was a great deal of new data gained. They created the most complete picture of malignant pleural mesothelioma to date. Most important, genomic experts confirmed that mesothelioma is magnified by a loss of function of tumor suppressor genes.

Understanding the Genomic Mesothelioma Microenvironment

According to Nicola Waddell from the Clinical Genomics and Genome Informatics Group, “We propose accounting for genomic and immune microenvironment status may influence therapeutic planning in the future.”

This study expanded the analysis of malignant pleural mesothelioma using whole genome sequencing. Further genomic analysis of mesothelioma immunotherapy clinical trial samples will be important. They could lead to a better understanding of the molecular biomarkers. And they could lead to better outcomes for patients.


Creaney, Jenette, Ann-Marie Patch, Venkateswar Addala, Sophie A. Sneddon, Katia Nones, Ian M. Dick, Y. C. Lee et al. “Comprehensive genomic and tumour immune profiling reveals potential therapeutic targets in malignant pleural mesothelioma.” Genome Medicine 14, no. 1 (2022): 1-18. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s13073-022-01060-8


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