In the battle against mesothelioma, scientists are trying out new methods that use the body’s own defenses. A recent study in Cancer Science explored a treatment called combination immunotherapy. It uses special medicines that help the immune system and has worked well for other cancers.
Using Immunotherapy to Fight Mesothelioma
Researchers are studying a protein called podoplanin (PDPN) in malignant pleural mesothelioma. This protein could help diagnose the cancer and be a target for treatment. Scientists made a special antibody to attack PDPN, aiming to kill cancer cells. But they weren’t sure how these antibodies worked with other immune cells or with the medicines used in immunotherapy.
In a new study, scientists made new and improved antibodies to better attack PDPN. They tested these antibodies on mesothelioma cells called AB1-HA cells.
The results were exciting. When they used one antibody alone, it didn’t stop tumors in mice with AB1-HA cells. But when they combined it with a drug that helps the immune system, the treatment started working much better against the tumors.
This combined treatment made the antibodies work better and brought more powerful immune cells, called natural killer cells, to the tumors. These natural killer cells find and destroy cancer cells. The researchers found that these cells were important for the combined treatment to work. When they removed these cells, the treatment didn’t work well anymore.
Finding New Ways to Treat Mesothelioma
This study shows how antibodies can work better with other treatments and change the immune system to fight mesothelioma. By combining these antibodies with other medicines, scientists might find new ways to treat advanced malignant pleural mesothelioma.
This treatment method might work for other cancers too. This could bring hope for better treatments, not just for mesothelioma but for many other challenging cancers.
In short, this study is a big step in using the immune system to fight malignant pleural mesothelioma. It shows how mixing different treatments might make a big difference in treating tough cancers and improving the lives of people facing these challenges.
Yoneda, Hiroto, Atsushi Mitsuhashi, Aito Yoshida, Hirokazu Ogino, Satoshi Itakura, Na Thi Nguyen, Hiroshi Nokihara, et al. “Antipodoplanin Antibody Enhances the Antitumor Effects of CTLA-4 Blockade against Malignant Mesothelioma by Natural Killer Cells.” Cancer Science n/a, no. n/a. Accessed January 4, 2024. https://doi.org/10.1111/cas.16046.