Cancer Research Improves Outcomes for Hard to Treat Cancers Like Mesothelioma

Cancer Research Improves Outcomes for Hard to Treat Cancers Like Mesothelioma

The best tool for fighting cancer is research. It is the only way to create new treatments and tests for different types of cancer. When doctors have more knowledge, treatments become much better. People continue to be diagnosed with cancer, and there is not a cure for all cancers, so research needs to be performed to fight against the disease. Even if a cure is not found for certain cancers, people can live longer and better lives after a diagnosis because of research. People diagnosed with cancer today are living longer and better lives thanks to research done years ago.

New treatments coming from research are what allow cancers to be cured. At one point almost all children diagnosed with leukemia and almost all men diagnosed with testicular cancer died from their cancer, but today most cases are cured from treatments developed by research. Other cancers are still hard to treat though, so more research needs to be done. Mesothelioma for instance has not been cured, but treatments allow for patients to live longer and more comfortably after a diagnosis. Research can also allow treatments to be improved so patients do not experience as many side effects during treatment.

There is some exciting research being done for lung cancer. One procedure being researched is stereotactic radiosurgery. The procedure noninvasively uses tiny radiation beams to target cancer cells. It works well for targeting lung cancer that has spread to the head and neck. Targeted therapies are also being tested for lung cancer. There are two types: small molecule drugs and monoclonal antibodies. Small molecule drugs either enter the cell and interfere with molecules inside or interfere with molecules outside the cell. Monoclonal antibodies work outside cells by delivering toxic molecules to cells. Immunotherapies are also tested with lung cancer. They help the immune system see and kill cancer cells. Research is also being done to match individual molecular profiles of patients with treatments to create very targeted treatments.

Research is also improving mesothelioma care. One study is looking at a cancer vaccine called galinpepimut-S being combined with the immunotherapy drug nivolumab. The vaccine targets a protein on the surface of mesothelioma cells called WT1. When mixed with montanide, the immune response to mesothelioma is boosted. Another treatment that should be promising for mesothelioma uses CAR-T cells to treat the disease. T cells (white blood cells) are taken out of the body and modified to help them recognize mesothelin. The modified cells, called CAR-T cells, are administered to the patient. The trial is looking to find the highest dose of CAR T-cells that can be administered to pleural mesothelioma patients that have mesothelin. Another promising study is looking at cryoablation being combined with pembrolizumab. Cryoablation utilizes extremely cold needles that are administered to tumors while pembrolizumab is an immunotherapy treatment that boosts the immune system. When cancer cells are killed by this method, they can break off and be killed by the boosted immune system. These are just some treatments that are being used to fight mesothelioma. More treatments will continue until a definitive cure can be found.

Different advances in technology have greatly improved lung cancer and mesothelioma treatments. CAR T-cell therapy, which is now being tested on mesothelioma, was developed from research done from transplanting bone marrow for leukemia. CAR-T cell therapy was once a hypothetical treatment but is now approved for acute lymphoblastic leukemia and is being tested on mesothelioma. Without research, none of this would be possible. As technology continues to advance, new treatments will be developed to enhance the treatment of hard-to-treat cancers.

Were you diagnosed with mesothelioma, lung cancer, or another cancer? Contact us today to see if you could be entitled to compensation. Call 412-471-3980 or fill out our contact form to speak to a member of our team.

Sources:
“A Phase I Study of a Targeted Cancer Vaccine (Galinpepimut-S) Combined with Nivolumab Immunotherapy in Patients with Persistent Pleural Mesothelioma” Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center [Link]
“A Phase I Study of CAR T-Cell Immunotherapy for Pleural Mesothelioma” [Link]
“A Phase I Study of Pembrolizumab Immunotherapy plus Cryoablation for People with Inoperable Mesothelioma” Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center [Link]
Cade Hildreth, “History of CAR-T Cell Therapy Spans 60+ Years” BioInformant [Link]
“Lung Cancer Research” MD Anderson Cancer Center [Link]
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