Tag Archives: Alimta

Mesothelioma Histology Impacts Response to Chemotherapy

Response to chemotherapy

Response to chemotherapy for people with malignant mesothelioma may depend – at least in part – on the histology or subtype of their tumor. That is the finding of a new study from a team of Spanish doctors. The doctors analyzed the cases of 189 pleural mesothelioma patients treated at their hospital between 2002 and 2020.  Their study confirms what other studies have suggested: People with epithelioid tumors have better response to chemotherapy than those with non-epithelioid subtypes. These patients experienced both longer progression-free survival and longer overall survival.  Systemic Treatment for Pleural Mesothelioma The first chemotherapy drug for malignant pleural mesothelioma received FDA approval in 2004. Alimta was the only approved systemic (whole body) treatment for pleural mesothelioma until 2020.  … Continue reading Mesothelioma Histology Impacts Response to Chemotherapy »

Immunotherapy and Chemotherapy Shrink Peritoneal Mesothelioma Tumors: New Case Reports

immunotherapy and chemotherapy

Two new case reports appear to support the idea that immunotherapy and chemotherapy can work together to fight peritoneal mesothelioma.  The case reports appears in the newest issue of the Journal of Immunotherapy. It details the cases of two patients with malignant peritoneal mesothelioma – a lethal cancer of the lining of the abdomen.  Both patients relapsed on standard platinum-based chemotherapy. But adding an immune checkpoint inhibitor dramatically improved their results. In one case, a patient’s tumor nearly disappeared.  Doctors at New York’s Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center say the cases suggest that immunotherapy and chemotherapy might offer an alternative for patients who have run out of options.  Alternative Treatments Needed for Peritoneal Mesothelioma About a fifth of patients who … Continue reading Immunotherapy and Chemotherapy Shrink Peritoneal Mesothelioma Tumors: New Case Reports »

Real-World Mesothelioma Patients Need New Systemic Treatments

real-world mesothelioma patients

The newest study on real-world mesothelioma patients illustrates the need for more ways to treat this devastating cancer.  Many studies focus on a carefully-chosen subset of patients. Patients have to meet specific guidelines to qualify for a mesothelioma clinical trial.  But the authors of a new report in Future Oncology focused on real-world mesothelioma patients in community clinics. The goal was to see what kinds of treatments these patients got and how well they worked.  The results show most people do not have other treatments after first-line therapy. They also suggest that mesothelioma doctors and patients need new first-line alternatives.  First- and Second-Line Mesothelioma Therapies Malignant mesothelioma is the name for cancer on the membranes around internal organs. Pleural mesothelioma … Continue reading Real-World Mesothelioma Patients Need New Systemic Treatments »

Injectable Pemetrexed for Mesothelioma Now Available for the First Time

Women with Mesothelioma Have Better Odds than Men

The FDA has cleared injectable pemetrexed for mesothelioma after two drug companies settled a patent dispute over the medication in December. Until now, the chemotherapy drug pemetrexed has only been available for infusion. In this form, it is called Alimta and is distributed by Eli Lilly.  But New Jersey-based Eagle Pharmaceuticals wanted to develop a form of injectable pemetrexed for mesothelioma. They received tentative approval for the drug in 2018, but it was not until the patent issue was settled that the final approval was granted.  The drug may shorten the duration of treatment for some patients with malignant mesothelioma.  Pemetrexed the Primary Mesothelioma Treatment Malignant mesothelioma is an intractable cancer that grows on the membranes around internal organs. Patients … Continue reading Injectable Pemetrexed for Mesothelioma Now Available for the First Time »

Unresectable Peritoneal Mesothelioma Becomes Operable After Bi-Directional Chemotherapy

French researchers have successfully operated on a man with unresectable peritoneal mesothelioma after treating him with bi-directional chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is the most common treatment for unresectable peritoneal mesothelioma. Most mesothelioma patients have chemotherapy by IV infusion. But some cancer centers now offer another chemotherapy delivery method. Intraperitoneal chemotherapy bypasses the bloodstream. It lets doctors put higher doses of cancer-killing medicine at the site of a tumor. The French team combined the two types of chemotherapy in one patient. It shrunk the patient’s unresectable peritoneal mesothelioma tumor enough to perform surgery.  Two Types of Mesothelioma Chemotherapy With IV chemotherapy, medicine travels to the tumor through the bloodstream. It is one way of treating unresectable peritoneal mesothelioma. One drawback of IV chemotherapy … Continue reading Unresectable Peritoneal Mesothelioma Becomes Operable After Bi-Directional Chemotherapy »

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

Allergic Reaction to Chemotherapy

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” »