Transarterial chemoperfusion give some hope to mesothelioma patients

Transarterial chemoperfusion give some hope to mesothelioma patients

Researchers at the specialist mesothelioma unit in the Moffitt Cancer Center have been using ‘Transarterial chemoperfusion’ to deliver high dose chemo straight to the cancer with minimal side-effects.

Mesothelioma occurs in the thin coverings or linings of organs. Pleural mesothelioma is primarily found in the lining of the lungs or chest wall. There is no cure. Mesothelioma is well known to be caused by prior contact with asbestos. 

Some talcum powders were found as long ago as the early 70s to contain asbestos too, and there are links to lung, breast and ovarian cancers.

A new treatment has been developed for advanced pleural mesothelioma to help these patients who have few options. It is called Transarterial chemoperfusion (1). It attacks the cancer locally and from two directions.

Normally, chemotherapy is taken orally or by IV and circulates throughout the body, prompting liver issues and side effects.

Here the doctors delivered a high dose of three drugs - cisplatin, methotrexate and gemcitabine - direct to the cancerous tissue, one-third directly into the internal mammary artery that supplies the pleura and two thirds into the descending aorta which passes to the intercostal vessel supplying the pleura.

Patients had the treatment for one hour and spent one hour afterwards sitting calmly, then went home. The team led by Doctor Bela Kis an interventional radiologist at the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida were simply trying to extend patients’ lives. The treatment was well tolerated with only 1.7 per cent of patients reporting a side-effect. Kis said they were pleased to see that the side-effects were much lower than for conventional treatments.

27 patients were enrolled in the phase II trial and all had had prior chemo and/or surgery; some had had radiotherapy. Interim results showed 70.3 per cent of patients had disease control, and median survival was 8.5 months from the start of treatment.

The researchers now want to expand their trial to other centers in order to increase numbers for what is a relatively rare cancer.  They also want to explore dosages and chemo combinations.

Moffitt Cancer Center has a specialist Mesothelioma unit.


Go to: The CheckMate trial for Lung cancer and mesothelioma






  Approved by the Medical Board. Click Here 


2021 Research
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