Italian researchers from the University of of Salento in Lecce recently published findings from their study of a potentially groundbreaking mesothelioma cancer treatment that could drastically improve the prognosis of patients with what is considered to be one of the more difficult types of cancer to treat. The study researched how well lab rats with particular mesothelioma tumors responded to two experimental drugs, Ptac2S and cisplatin, and whether either of the two treatments could potentially translate into benefits for human patients.
Sarcomatous mesothelioma, also known as diffuse malignant fibrous and spindled mesothelioma, is one of the less common forms of the disease, affecting an estimated 7 to 20% of mesothelioma cancer patients. Diagnosis is often more difficult with this particular form of the disease as the tumor cells tend to mimic other types of benign and deadly cancers under traditional diagnostic methods like x-rays, CT scans, and MRI.
The results of the study were promising, with injections of Ptac2S reducing tumor growth by 50% and shrinking tumor mass by 53%. On the other hand, lab rats treated with cisplatin reduced tumor size by 12%, a significantly smaller impact than Ptac2S but still positive treatment option. The results of Ptac2S treatments from the Italian study reinforce previous research showing the drug to be 12 times more effective at fighting certain cancer cells than cisplatin.
Cisplatin has long been the go-to form of chemotherapy for oncologists to combat the spread of mesothelioma cancer cells but often carries serious side effects that can make improving the patient’s quality of life much more difficult. The drug treats mesothelioma by attaching itself to tumor cells to prevent growth but can also attack otherwise healthy cells and cause kidney damage and other grave health conditions.
Furthermore, cisplatin therapy becomes less effective over time while the same tolerability was not observed in subjects injected with Ptac2S, which killed malignant pleural mesothelioma cells quicker. Although the research is still in its very early stages, the hope of many researchers is that the drug can be added to a pallet of treatment options to extend the life of mesothelioma patients and make their situation more comfortable.
Mesothelioma takes decades to develop in patients and can go undiagnosed until many treatment options like surgery are no longer viable. Many times, patients are left with limited treatment options like chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and immunotherapy to combat the deadly disease. Hopefully, the outstanding research like that performed at the University of of Salento and other institutions will yield treatments to finally cure mesothelioma once and for all.
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If you or a loved one were diagnosed with mesothelioma, contact our office to speak to one of our experienced nationwide mesothelioma attorneys about your situation. Our office can help investigate your case and determine if compensation can be sought from negligent parties to help pay for your medical treatment to help you and your family live a more comfortable life.