A new study supports the use of immune checkpoint inhibitors to treat malignant pleural mesothelioma. The study authors caution that immune checkpoint inhibitors should be used carefully because they can be an expensive treatment. Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma Mesothelioma is a rare type of cancer that is caused by exposure to asbestos. It develops from cells of the mesothelium, the lining that covers many of the internal organs of the body. There are approximately 2,000 cases of mesothelioma diagnosed in the United States every year. Since mesothelioma is so rare, standard treatment options are limited. Standard therapies include chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. If more than one of these therapies is used, it may be called multimodal therapy. Immunotherapy has emerged in … Continue reading Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors to Treat Mesothelioma
A new report shows that immune checkpoint inhibitors can be a practical and rational therapeutic approach to treating mesothelioma patients. The use of ICIs to treat human tumors has quickly become part of clinical practice. Immune checkpoint inhibitors block mesothelioma’s natural resistance to immune system attack. They are among the most promising approaches to combating this intractable cancer. Researchers from the Cellular and Molecular Research Center report the use of ICIs in tumor immunotherapy. What is Tumor Immunotherapy? Malignant mesothelioma is a frustrating disease for patients and doctors. Conventional cancer treatments often do not work. If cancer recurs, doctors can try other approved treatments, even if they are not part of the official treatment guidelines. Immunotherapy is also referred to … Continue reading A Bright Future for Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors in Mesothelioma Treatment
A new French case report shines a spotlight on a little-known potential complication of mesothelioma immunotherapy: celiac disease. Celiac disease is a chronic digestive and immune disorder brought on by sensitivity to gluten. Over time, celiac disease damages the small intestine causing long-lasting digestive problems. It can prevent patients from getting the nutrients they need to stay healthy. The new case report appears in Frontiers in Immunology. It details the case of a 70-year-old man who developed celiac disease after treatment with nivolumab. The case suggests that celiac disease may be an underrecognized side effect of mesothelioma immunotherapy. It is a reminder for mesothelioma patients and doctors to pay close attention to digestive problems after treatment. Stimulating the Immune System … Continue reading Celiac Disease May Be a Little-Known Complication of Mesothelioma Immunotherapy
A new report shows that doctors started using immune checkpoint inhibitors for recurrent mesothelioma at least two years before the practice was officially sanctioned. This early adoption gave ICIs traction to quickly become part of clinical practice. Immune checkpoint inhibitors block mesothelioma’s built-in resistance to immune system attack. They are among the most promising approaches to combating this intractable cancer. University of Pennsylvania researchers recently ran a retrospective study on immune checkpoint inhibitors for recurrent mesothelioma. The study looked at real-world mesothelioma patients at several different medical centers. The researchers found that, even though the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) did not revise it’s guidelines to include immune checkpoint inhibitors as a second-line treatment until 2017, doctors were using them … Continue reading Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors for Recurrent Mesothelioma: Early Adoption Gave Them Traction
A new study from one of the nation’s top cancer centers supports the role of immunotherapy in peritoneal mesothelioma treatment. Immunotherapy is a treatment approach that aims to harness the body’s natural defense system to fight cancer. Several immunotherapy drugs have been tested for pleural mesothelioma. Pleural mesothelioma affects the lungs. Last year, the FDA approved a new combination of immunotherapy drugs for the pleural form of asbestos cancer. But there is less data on immunotherapy for peritoneal mesothelioma. Researchers at MD Anderson Cancer Center just released their findings on a class of immunotherapy drugs called immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs). They say it is the first “real-world evidence” of clinical outcomes with ICIs in peritoneal mesothelioma patients. Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors … Continue reading New “Real World” Study of Immunotherapy for Peritoneal Mesothelioma
Swiss doctors have used a combination of photodynamic therapy and immunotherapy to dramatically shrink mesothelioma tumors in mice. More than a third of mice treated with an immune checkpoint inhibitor and low-dose light therapy experienced complete regression of their cancer. The new study explores how photodynamic therapy and immunotherapy can work together. The answers could have important implications for tens of thousands of people suffering from asbestos cancer. Two Different Approaches to Mesothelioma Mesothelioma is a rare but deadly cancer caused by asbestos exposure. Pleural mesothelioma occurs on the membrane around the lungs. It is the most common type of mesothelioma. Around 2,500 Americans receive a mesothelioma diagnosis each year. There is no cure. Photodynamic therapy and immunotherapy both show … Continue reading Photodynamic Therapy and Immunotherapy: A Powerful Mesothelioma Combo?
Belgian scientists say they are still not sure about the effect of chemotherapy on immunotherapy for mesothelioma. They reached that conclusion after testing several different chemotherapy drugs on mesothelioma cells in the lab. The combination of chemotherapy and immunotherapy is “chemoimmunotherapy”. It aims to harness the unique powers of each treatment approach. A meta-analysis last May called chemoimmunotherapy the “next frontier” in mesothelioma treatment. But the new Belgian study on the effect of chemotherapy on immunotherapy highlights how much doctors still do not know about the combo. Immune Checkpoints Are the Key When it is working properly, the immune system is supposed to find and kill cancer cells before they become mesothelioma tumors. But mesothelioma cells can hide from the … Continue reading Effect of Chemotherapy on Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma
A new kind of mesothelioma treatment called dendritic cell therapy might make other types of treatments even more effective. Right now, chemotherapy with Alimta (pemetrexed) is the only approved therapy for malignant mesothelioma. Many others are in the works. But so far, none of them extend the lives of mesothelioma patients by more than a few months. Dendritic cell therapy for mesothelioma may be different. This novel treatment uses the patient’s own cells to jumpstart the immune system. A Dutch company developed and is testing the new treatment. The data so far suggests that it could boost chemotherapy and help new drugs like Keytruda work better. How Dendritic Cell Therapy Works Dendritic cells are immune system cells that function as … Continue reading Dendritic Cell Therapy for Mesothelioma: Can it Help Other Treatments Work Better?