Tag Archives: Alimta

First-Line Chemotherapy for Peritoneal Mesothelioma

chemotherapy for peritoneal mesothelioma

The same drugs doctors use to treat pleural mesothelioma can provide effective chemotherapy for peritoneal mesothelioma, too. Japanese researchers reviewed the cases of 29 peritoneal mesothelioma patients. These patients had first-line treatment with cisplatin and pemetrexed between 2001 and 2016. The results suggest these drugs are safe and potent chemotherapy for peritoneal mesothelioma. The finding may help doctors and patients make better treatment decisions. Treating Malignant Mesothelioma Malignant mesothelioma is a membrane cancer. It usually occurs in one of two places. About 80 percent of mesothelioma tumors arise on the membrane that surrounds the lungs (the pleura). This is called pleural mesothelioma.  About 20 percent of the 2,500 cases of mesothelioma diagnosed in the US each year are peritoneal. Peritoneal … Continue reading First-Line Chemotherapy for Peritoneal Mesothelioma »

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 with Alimta: Putting More Gold in the Gold Standard

chemotherapy with Alimta

A new Italian study suggests there may be a more effective way to deliver mesothelioma chemotherapy with Alimta. Chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) is the gold standard treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma. But fewer than 40 percent of mesothelioma patients see improvement when they receive the drug by standard infusion. Now, researchers in biotechnology and nanomedicine think they may have found a way around the limits of chemotherapy with Alimta. Tiny particles of gold may be the answer. Why Chemotherapy with Alimta Does Not Always Work Even though most mesothelioma patients receive chemotherapy with Alimta at some point, it is usually only moderately effective. That is because pemetrexed is a highly potent drug that can cause deadly side effects at high doses. … Continue reading Chemotherapy with Alimta: Putting More Gold in the Gold Standard »

Avelumab May Offer a Second-Line Option for Recurrent Mesothelioma

recurrent mesothelioma treatment

People with recurrent mesothelioma may get another chance at treatment with the immunotherapy drug avelumab. Malignant mesothelioma is highly resistant to standard cancer therapies. That means that the asbestos cancer usually comes back, or recurs, even after treatment. The most common treatment for mesothelioma is chemotherapy with Alimta. Alimta is the only drug approved specifically for mesothelioma. Patients with recurrent mesothelioma often have several rounds of chemotherapy with Alimta. But once the standard mesothelioma treatments stop working, patients do not have many options. Now a new study suggests that some cases of recurrent mesothelioma that stop responding to Alimta may respond to avelumab.   Considering Avelumab for Recurrent Mesothelioma Bavencio is the brand name for avelumab. It is a type … Continue reading Avelumab May Offer a Second-Line Option for Recurrent Mesothelioma »

Faster Mesothelioma Chemotherapy Deemed “Safe and Feasible”

faster mesothelioma chemotherapy

Researchers in The Netherlands say it may be possible to deliver faster mesothelioma chemotherapy without doing any additional damage to the kidneys. If they are right, it could make mesothelioma treatment more accessible and convenient for patients. Most malignant mesothelioma patients will have chemotherapy. The most common type of chemotherapy is by infusion. Each session takes several hours. Every mesothelioma patient undergoing chemotherapy faces the possibility of kidney damage. That possibility can even limit how much medicine doctors can use. But a new Dutch study finds that faster mesothelioma chemotherapy may be as safe for the kidneys as standard chemotherapy. Analyzing Faster Mesothelioma Chemotherapy The study included 230 lung cancer patients who had chemotherapy. Some of the study subjects had … Continue reading Faster Mesothelioma Chemotherapy Deemed “Safe and Feasible” »

More Support for Novel Mesothelioma Drug Delivery System

Pharmaceutical researchers working on a way to make the most popular mesothelioma drug more effective have found more evidence that fat may be the answer. The team at Zagazig University in Egypt and Tokushima University in Japan have developed a fat-based coating for the antifolate drug pemetrexed (Alimta) that may help improve outcomes for patients. Pemetrexed is currently the only drug approved specifically to treat malignant mesothelioma and most patients will receive it at some point. Even so, like most mesothelioma therapies, pemetrexed is only marginally effective, in part because the dose has to be limited to avoid serious side effects. The new drug delivery system was designed to get around this problem by encapsulating molecules of pemetrexed in tiny … Continue reading More Support for Novel Mesothelioma Drug Delivery System »

Clinical Trial May be Best Second-Line Approach for Mesothelioma

Doctor holding x-ray film

The best second-line treatment for mesothelioma patients who fail to respond to standard chemotherapy is probably to enroll in a clinical trial. The authors of a newly-published paper on the subject reached that conclusion after reviewing the results of 29 studies on potential second- or third-line mesothelioma treatments. Most patients who are diagnosed with mesothelioma, an aggressive malignancy associated with asbestos exposure, will undergo chemotherapy, either as a stand-alone treatment or as part of a multimodal approach. Unfortunately, only a small percentage of mesothelioma patients treated with standard pemetrexed/cisplatin chemotherapy will show a response. Even those who respond to chemotherapy often relapse again later. Scientists around the world are searching for new drugs and drug combinations to offer mesothelioma patients … Continue reading Clinical Trial May be Best Second-Line Approach for Mesothelioma »

Lower-Cost Mesothelioma Drug May Be as Effective as Gold Standard

A new study suggests that the lower cost chemotherapy drug Gemzar (gemcitabine) combined with a platinum based agent (cisplatin or carboplatin) may be just as effective at treating advanced pleural mesothelioma as the gold standard mesothelioma drug Alimta (pemetrexed) . Doctors in Turkey, a country with one of the world’s highest rates of mesothelioma, tracked 116 mesothelioma patients who were treated with a combination of Alimta and a platinum drug between 1999 and 2012. During the same period, 30 mesothelioma patients received the alternative combination of Gemzar and a platinum drug. There were no differences between the two groups in terms of age, gender, asbestos exposure, histological subtype, cancer stage or other characteristics.  The mean age of the patients was … Continue reading Lower-Cost Mesothelioma Drug May Be as Effective as Gold Standard »

Mesothelioma Chemotherapy Side-Effect Mimics Scleroderma, Infection

depression

The antifolate pemetrexed (Alimta) is the first and is only drug approved by the FDA specifically to treat malignant mesothelioma, the aggressive cancer most closely associated with asbestos exposure.  A combination of pemetrexed and a platinum-based drug like cisplatin or carboplatin is the first-line treatment for most mesothelioma patients. But, like every drug, pemetrexed carries the potential for side effects. Researchers at Perigueux Hospital in Perigueux, France have just published a paper warning of a serious but little-known skin-related side effect of pemetrexed that may be unrecognized by mesothelioma patients and doctors. The report, published in a French dermatology journal, details the cases of two cancer patients on pemetrexed who developed a serious skin problem with symptoms resembling the connective … Continue reading Mesothelioma Chemotherapy Side-Effect Mimics Scleroderma, Infection »

Alimta May Extend Mesothelioma Survival as a Maintenance Therapy

T Scientists in Japan have just published details of a case they say could be pivotal to the treatment of intractable malignant pleural mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma is usually caused by exposure to asbestos and starts in the membrane around the lungs. Although there is no cure for mesothelioma, a chemotherapy combination of the platinum drug cisplatin and the anti-folate pemetrexed is considered to be the gold standard drug therapy. Unfortunately, many patients cannot tolerate high doses of cisplatin because of the danger of liver damage. But respiratory medicine specialists at Uji Tokushukai Medical Center in Japan say this problem may be tackled for some mesothelioma patients by continuing to give them pemetrexed. Dr. Takayuki Takeda and his team report the … Continue reading Alimta May Extend Mesothelioma Survival as a Maintenance Therapy »