Hello and welcome to our guide on immunotherapy mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is a rare cancer that affects the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart. It is caused by exposure to asbestos and often takes years, even decades, to develop. Mesothelioma is difficult to treat, but recent advancements in immunotherapy have given hope to mesothelioma patients. In this guide, we will discuss everything you need to know about immunotherapy for mesothelioma.
What is Immunotherapy?
Immunotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that helps the body’s immune system fight cancer. The immune system is designed to recognize and attack foreign substances in the body, including cancer cells. However, cancer cells can evade the immune system by producing proteins that prevent the immune system from recognizing them. Immunotherapy uses drugs or other substances to block these proteins, allowing the immune system to recognize and attack cancer cells.
How Does Immunotherapy Work?
Immunotherapy works by targeting specific proteins on cancer cells, called checkpoints. Checkpoints are proteins on the surface of cancer cells that prevent the immune system from recognizing and attacking them. Immunotherapy drugs called checkpoint inhibitors block these checkpoints, allowing the immune system to recognize and attack cancer cells. Immunotherapy can also boost the overall activity of the immune system, allowing it to better fight cancer cells.
Types of Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma
There are several types of immunotherapy used to treat mesothelioma, including:
Checkpoint inhibitors are immunotherapy drugs that block specific checkpoints on cancer cells, allowing the immune system to recognize and attack them. The most common checkpoint inhibitors used to treat mesothelioma are pembrolizumab and nivolumab.
T-cell Transfer Therapy
T-cell transfer therapy involves removing T cells from a patient’s blood and genetically modifying them to better recognize and attack cancer cells. The modified T cells are then reintroduced into the patient’s body.
Cancer vaccines are a type of immunotherapy that stimulate the immune system to attack cancer cells. Mesothelioma vaccines are currently being studied in clinical trials.
Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma Clinical Trials
Mesothelioma clinical trials are research studies that test new treatments for mesothelioma, including immunotherapy. Clinical trials are essential for advancing cancer treatment and improving patient outcomes. There are currently several clinical trials testing new immunotherapy treatments for mesothelioma.
Current Immunotherapy Clinical Trials for Mesothelioma
Some of the current immunotherapy clinical trials for mesothelioma include:
|NCT03710876||Ipilimumab and Nivolumab||Phase 1/2|
|NCT02414269||Ipilimumab and Tremelimumab||Phase 2|
|NCT02588131||Durvalumab and Tremelimumab||Phase 2|
How to Participate in a Mesothelioma Immunotherapy Clinical Trial
Participating in a mesothelioma immunotherapy clinical trial can provide access to new treatments and help advance research. Patients can search for clinical trials on the National Cancer Institute website or through their doctor. Patients should discuss the risks and benefits of participating in a clinical trial with their doctor.
Immunotherapy Side Effects
Immunotherapy can cause side effects, although they are generally less severe than those caused by chemotherapy. Common side effects of immunotherapy include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of appetite
- Skin rash
- Joint pain
Managing Immunotherapy Side Effects
Patients can manage immunotherapy side effects by:
- Resting when needed
- Eating a healthy diet
- Taking medications as prescribed
- Talking to their doctor about pain management
- Reporting side effects to their doctor right away
Immunotherapy is a promising treatment option for mesothelioma. Clinical trials are ongoing to test new immunotherapy treatments for mesothelioma, and patients can participate in these trials to access new treatments and help advance research. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, talk to your doctor about whether immunotherapy is right for you.