Tag Archives: mesothelioma study

‘Tunnels’ Between Cells: A New Target for Mesothelioma Treatment?

Doctors with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York and the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis have just released a new report on cellular structures called tunneling nanotubes and their potential role in mesothelioma growth and proliferation. Tunneling nanotubes (TnT), which are also sometimes referred to as “membrane nanotubes” or “intercellular bridges” are actin-based extensions or tubes that function as channels for transporting materials and information between cells. Because tunneling nanotubes are one of the important ways cells communicate with each other, the researchers theorized that they may also play a role in mesothelioma and devised a series of experiments to try to determine what that role is. Among other findings, the researchers discovered that tissue taken from mesothelioma … Continue reading ‘Tunnels’ Between Cells: A New Target for Mesothelioma Treatment? »

Mesothelioma Surgeon Says Proper Staging Key to Radical Surgery Survival

One of the country’s top mesothelioma surgeons has just published a study he says confirms the role of lymph node involvement in survival after radical mesothelioma surgery. Dr. David Sugarbaker, Director of the Lung Institute at Baylor College of Medicine in Texas, is one of the most experienced practioners of a radical surgical approach to malignant pleural mesothelioma called extrapleural pneumonectomy. EPP aims to prevent the spread or return of mesothelioma by not only removing the tumor and the pleural lining on which it is located, but also the nearest lung, all or part of the diaphragm, the lining around the heart, and other at-risk tissues. The procedure is controversial because of its high rate of complications and death. Some … Continue reading Mesothelioma Surgeon Says Proper Staging Key to Radical Surgery Survival »

NIH Grant May Help Validate Light-Based Therapy for Mesothelioma

University of Pennsylvania researchers studying a promising mesothelioma treatment that kills cancer cells with light will get the opportunity to take their research to the next level thanks to a significant new grant. Penn’s Perelman School of Medicine has received $8 million from the National Cancer Institute to delve deeper into the effects of photodynamic therapy (PDT) in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma. The team has been researching and using the treatment in patients for several years, but the grant will allow them to conduct a larger clinical trial to further validate their good results. “This trial represents a major step in understanding the combination of treatment modalities that will offer patients the best hope for survival and extended remission,” … Continue reading NIH Grant May Help Validate Light-Based Therapy for Mesothelioma »

Women Much More Likely to Survive Mesothelioma than Men

A new study of more than 14,000 American mesothelioma patients finds that women are three times more likely to survive mesothelioma than men are. Researchers from the North Shore/Long Island Jewish Health System-Hofstra School of Medicine and Mount Sinai Health System in New York studied all pathologically confirmed mesothelioma cases in the national Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) database between 1973 and 2009. Patients were analyzed by age, year of diagnosis, race, stage, treatments, gender and other factors. The team then used the data to assess the association between the various prognostic factors and survival. Of the 14,228 malignant pleural mesothelioma cases analyzed, 22% occurred in women. These women tended to be diagnosed at around the same cancer stage … Continue reading Women Much More Likely to Survive Mesothelioma than Men »

Peritoneal Mesothelioma Study: Long-Term Survival is Possible


A new study out of Italy has some encouraging news for patients with the peritoneal form of malignant mesothelioma. The recent analysis of 108 peritoneal mesothelioma patients who underwent complete cytoreductive surgery (CRS) followed by a rinse of heated chemotherapy (HIPEC) found a 43.6% cure rate among long-term survivors. Peritoneal mesothelioma is a rare form of one of the rarest cancers. Triggered almost exclusively by exposure to asbestos, mesothelioma affects about 2,500 Americans each year.  About a third of those patients are diagnosed with the peritoneal form of the disease, which occurs on the membrane that lines the abdomen and surrounds the internal organs. During cytoreductive surgery, surgeons attempt to remove all traces of the mesothelioma tumor so that no cells … Continue reading Peritoneal Mesothelioma Study: Long-Term Survival is Possible »

Wind and Weather Impacts Mesothelioma Rate


People who live downwind from an industrial asbestos source are at much higher risk of developing pleural mesothelioma, according to a new study. Researchers in Barcelona, Spain analyzed 24 cases of pleural mesothelioma diagnosed between 2000 and 2009 near the town of Catalonia. For 90 years, this area of Barcelona was home to a fibrous cement factory where asbestos was used. Because asbestos dust is very light, it does not dissipate in the air quickly. When a person inadvertently inhales or ingests it, the tiny fibers lodge in the tissues and can cause health problems such as mesothelioma even decades later. Although the plant closed in 1997, the rate of mesothelioma in the region continues to be high. To test whether … Continue reading Wind and Weather Impacts Mesothelioma Rate »

Study Lists Factors That Impact Mesothelioma Prognosis

Predicting survival in mesothelioma patients does not have to be complicated. A new Parisian study suggests that simple-to-measure factors such as patient age and the histological subtype of the mesothelioma can be highly accurate prognostic indicators. The study followed 170 patients diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma between 2000 and 2010 at Saint Antoine Hospital in Paris. Patients in the study were all treated non-surgically. For each patient, a list of parameters was recorded including age, gender, tobacco use, asbestos exposure, type and duration of symptoms, BMI, C-reactive protein levels and white blood cell and platelet counts.  Inflammation of the pleura (pachypleuritis) was also noted, along with the type of diagnostic surgical procedure, histological subtype, the way in which pleurodesis was performed (for … Continue reading Study Lists Factors That Impact Mesothelioma Prognosis »

Mesothelioma Study: Taconite Link Appears Weak

The long-awaited results of the Minnesota Taconite Workers Health Study are in but many questions remain about the link between the iron-based mineral taconite and malignant mesothelioma. The five-year study was commissioned by the Minnesota Department of Health and carried out by researchers at the University of Minnesota at a cost of $4.9 million. The goal of the study was to determine why 82 taconite workers have died of mesothelioma, a rare lung-related cancer normally associated with asbestos exposure, since 2010. Preliminary findings of the study, which focused on the 50,000 current and former taconite workers born since 1920, have been released every couple of years since the study began. But last week was the first time that iron workers and … Continue reading Mesothelioma Study: Taconite Link Appears Weak »

EPP No, Chemotherapy Yes, Suggests New Mesothelioma Study

A pair of thoracic oncologists from Belgium say it’s time to go a step further in the wake of a controversial study on mesothelioma surgery and examine the impact of perioperative chemotherapy. Based on mesothelioma research from around the world, the 2011 Mesothelioma and Radical Surgery (MARS) randomized feasibility study concluded that extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) was too risky and should be abandoned as a surgical approach for mesothelioma. EPP involves removing not only the diseased pleura containing the mesothelioma tumor, but also the nearest lung, the diaphragm, and other internal membranes.  The MARS study recommended, instead, that operable mesothelioma be treated with lung-sparing pleurectomy/decortication (P/D) or extended pleurectomy/decortication. But surgery alone, regardless of which method is used, has been shown to produce … Continue reading EPP No, Chemotherapy Yes, Suggests New Mesothelioma Study »

Town’s Asbestos and Mesothelioma Risk Subject of Study

University of Pennsylvania researchers have announced that they will use a $1.2 million National Institutes of Health grant to study the residual effects of asbestos, the mineral that causes mesothelioma, on the town of Ambler, Pennsylvania. Once a bustling asbestos manufacturing town, Ambler is now home to two EPA Superfund cleanup sites. The Ambler Asbestos Piles, also known as the ‘White Mountains’, and the BoRit Asbestos site are all that is left of an industry that both supported and put the community at risk starting in 1897. Before it was known that asbestos caused mesothelioma and other health problems, thousands of unprotected workers had already been exposed. The mesothelioma risk in Ambler continued into the 1980’s when the last remaining … Continue reading Town’s Asbestos and Mesothelioma Risk Subject of Study »