Mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer caused by asbestos exposure, is notoriously difficult to treat. The deadly disease is resistant to many common cancer treatments, including many cancer drugs. Researchers are finding, however, that the key to mesothelioma survival may not be one treatment, but a combination of treatments. Combination therapy is showing promising results in patients suffering from malignant pleural mesothelioma.
Most mesothelioma patients undergo some form of chemotherapy as part of their treatment plan, but it rarely has a significant impact on the length of their survival. Experimental treatments such as immunotherapy or genetic manipulation have had some success in clinical trials, but they have yet to prove effective as a cure for the disease on their own.
Researchers Combined Three Treatments to Combat Mesothelioma
A team of collaborators from the University of Pennsylvania, the Perelman School of Medicine, the University of Maryland, and NYU School of Medicine recently conducted a study combining all three types of treatment – chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and gene therapy – with promising results. The researchers treated forty patients suffering from unresectable pleural mesothelioma, some of whom had previously been treated with chemotherapy. Each patient was given gene therapy and immunotherapy treatments before receiving a standard course of chemotherapy.
Patients were given two doses of human interferon-alpha2b gene, delivered via a carrier virus. They then underwent a two-week treatment with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug celecoxib (Celebrex). The treatment concluded with a round of chemotherapy, using either pemetrexed or gemcitabine. More trials will be needed to determine if what they are calling chemo-immunogene therapy should be made widely available as a treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma, but the test group showed a substantially higher overall survival rate than historical control groups. Researchers say that the treatment is not only effective, but safe for mesothelioma patients, and they are optimistic about its potential.
Philadelphia Mesothelioma Lawyers at Shein Law Center Advocate for Victims of Asbestos-Related Diseases
If you or a loved one is suffering from cancer or another asbestos-related disease, call our Philadelphia asbestos lawyers at Shein Law to help. Our knowledgeable, dedicated legal team will thoroughly review the facts of your case to determine who is at fault for your asbestos exposure and fight for the compensation you deserve. With offices conveniently located in Philadelphia and Pennsauken, we help asbestos exposure victims throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Call us today at 1-877-SHEINLAW (743-4652) or contact us online to discuss your case with a qualified mesothelioma lawyer.