Mesothelioma News Update: Immunotherapy Treatments Show Promise for Patients

October 13, 2017  |  Mesothelioma

A new study released in September demonstrated that some immunotherapy drugs may be beneficial for patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma. Presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology Congress in Madrid, trial results showed “encouraging activity” of nivolumab — alone, or in combination with ipilimumab as second- or third-line treatment — for patients with this specific diagnosis.

“Improved disease control”

The results, which were obtained through a non-comparative, randomized Phase 2 trial, “support the National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s decision to recommend this monotherapy or combination therapy as options for second- or third-line therapy in relapsing malignant pleural mesothelioma,” said Dr. Gerard Zalcman, head of thoracic oncology at Bichat-Claude Bernard Hospital in Paris.

According to the news release about the study, each of the monotherapy and combination regimens used “achieved their primary endpoints of improved disease control at 12 weeks compared with other treatments.”

New options for pleural mesothelioma patients

Patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma — a rare disease caused by asbestos exposure — are usually prescribed first-line therapy including pemetrexed and platinum chemotherapy. In some cases, bevacizumab (Avastin) is also used.

But for a patient with progressive disease, there are no recommended treatments since second-line treatments yield limited results. And previous studies note that all other drugs tested in this setting achieve less than 30% disease control rates.

The fight continues

While progress is constantly being made in the search for better ways to treat mesothelioma, many medications and procedures associated with the disease are costly. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, please contact the mesothelioma lawyers at Baron & Budd immediately. You can reach us online or call 855-280-7664 to discuss your legal options.


Reference: Zalcman G, et al. Abstract LBA58_PR. Presented at: European Society for Medical Oncology Congress; Sept. 8-12, 2017; Madrid.

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