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New Treatment for Resistant Tumors Shows Potential for Mesothelioma Patients

Throughout the many decades that I have been representing clients with mesothelioma, I have seen many significant advancements in the field of cancer and mesothelioma research.  Most recently I read about a new therapy that has been tested in a Phase 1 clinical trial and has shown promise in the treatment of mesothelioma tumors.  Each new treatment and discovery that is made for this devastating disease takes us one step closer to someday finding a cure for mesothelioma.

A Promising New Therapy

One of the therapies used to treat cancerous tumors works by inhibiting the growth of blood vessels around the tumor thereby stopping the spread of the cancer cells.  This is called “antiangiogenic therapy.”

Despite the advances that have been made with this therapy, many tumors manage to escape this blockade.  Recently, a new study reported that targeting a novel antiangiongenic receptor may be a promising treatment for patients whose tumors do not respond to the current therapy. This finding was reported at an International Conference on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics. The American Association for Cancer Research, the National Cancer Institute and the European Organization for Research and Treatment of Cancer were all part of this international conference

The experimental therapy is called PF-03446962.  This therapy is aimed at targeting proteins in the body that grow and divide specialized cells such as the kinase 1 protein(ALK-1).  PF-03446962 is an antibody that has been developed for humans explicitly meant to stop the activity of ALK-1.

The Results of the Initial Study

Researchers tested this new therapy in a Phase 1 clinical trial which showed the treatment demonstrated anticancer activity in tumors.  Dr. Fillipo de Braud, was the director of the European Institute of Oncology when this study was conducted.  He and his colleagues tested eight different doses of PF-03446962 on 44 patients with cancerous tumors.  The patients who showed the most improvement had previously been treated with antiangiogenic therapy for lung, renal, or liver cancer.  The 2 patients who showed the longest response to this new treatment had been diagnosed with adrenocortical cancer and mesothelioma.

I am anxiously awaiting the results of more studies involving this new therapy, PF-03446962, and especially its effect on mesothelioma tumors.

Clinical Trials Offer Hope

Many of my clients suffering from mesothelioma have taken part in clinical trials. I encourage anyone who has been diagnosed mesothelioma to discuss clinical trials with their doctors to determine whether they may be a candidate for a clinical trial. Your doctor will explain the benefits and risks as they relate to your particular circumstances. There are new clinical trials taking place every day.  Clinical trials offer great hope to patients in finding new treatments and therapies for mesothelioma.  Clinical trials are also our best hope at someday finding a cure for this devastating disease.