Some investigational immunotherapy drugs that act on the programmed cell death pathway in lung cancer patients are now being considered as a new treatment means for patients with mesothelioma.
Several presentations at the recent European Lung Cancer Conference (ELCC) 2014 in Zurich about these possible new mesothelioma treatments were set forth in the March 27, 2014 article, “Could Immunotherapy Work in Mesothelioma?”, published online by Medscape.
As regards the first study, from this March 2014 article:
Sarcomatoid mesothelioma has the worst prognosis, and is generally considered to be the most aggressive form of the disease, [lead author Aaron Mansfield, MD, from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota]commented to Medscape Medical News. Many of these patients have extensive disease and are not eligible for surgery. He suggested that the data showing that these tumors express PDL-1 offers hope that PDL-1 blocking agents may be of benefit in these patients. A clinical trial is already underway, he said.
And later in that same Medscape report we get this summary about another presentation at the 2014 ELCC in Zurich concerning new approaches to treating mesothelioma:
At another session at the meeting, Dean Fennell, PhD, FRCP, chair of thoracic medical oncology at the University of Leicester, United Kingdom, reviewed new approaches to the treatment of mesothelioma that are currently under investigation, and said that PD inhibition has really important potential in this disease. He also mentioned the success that had been seen with another immune-based response, which used an antimesothelin immunotoxin in combination with immunosuppression (Sci Transl Med. 2013;5:208ra147). This vaccine-like approach showed “quite spectacular results,” with some patients showing “very significant regression,” he commented.
We will continue to monitor the medical literature for developments as regards mesothelioma treatment options.
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