Aromasin May Be Effective Treatment for Mesothelioma: Study
The findings of a new study indicate that the breast cancer drug Aromasin may be an effective treatment for mesothelioma, a rare and deadly form of cancer associated with exposure to asbestos.
Researchers from Italy’s Regina Elena National Cancer Institute published findings in the March issue of the medical journal Molecular Cancer, which suggest that Aromasin retards the growth and spread of mesothelioma.
The study suggests that Aromasin may be used to slow mesothelioma, which is almost always fatal due to the advanced stage the cancer is in by the time it is discovered.
Mesothelioma is only known to occur among individuals exposed to asbestos, which was commonly used for decades in a variety of manufacturing and construction applications. There is no known cure for the disease, and it is usually not diagnosed until decades after asbestos exposure. As a result individuals typically have a very short life expectancy after discovery, given the advanced stage the cancer is often in.
Researchers in this latest say it could be possible to reduce proliferation of mesothelioma cells with Aromasin treatments.
The findings of this study show significant reduction the cell proliferation, survival, migration and block of mesothelioma cells. Mice infected with human mesothelioma cells saw significant tumor reduction when given Aromasin. They also found that the drug appears to inhibit CD44, a surface glycoprotein involved in cell migration.
When Aromasin was combined with Alimta, a commonly-used mesothelioma drug, researchers said tumors were reduced so small that they had trouble collecting sample cells.
Researchers are calling for further studies and human clinical trials.
Asbestos Litigation Over Mesothelioma
Although asbestos has been banned for more than 30 years, new cases of the deadly disease continue to surface given the long latency period of 20 to 40 years between exposure and diagnosis of mesothelioma.
Asbestos was use peaking in 1973, and previous reports by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggest that the number of cases of malignant mesothelioma are just now peaking.
Over the past few decades, mesothelioma lawsuits have become the longest-running mass tort litigation in U.S. history, with more than 600,000 people having filed a lawsuit against more than 6,000 defendants after being diagnosed with mesothelioma or another asbestos-related injuy caused by inhaling the fibers.
In addition to cases for individuals directly exposed, in recent years there have been a growing number of second-hand asbestos exposure lawsuits brought on behalf of family members were exposed to fibers carried home on clothing or in the hair of individuals working with the material. Cases have been brought by individuals who were exposed as young children or babies when their parents would hold them after returning home from work with asbestos.
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