Gene-Editing Tool Reverses Cancer Resistance to Chemotherapy

A team of researchers at the Gene Editing Institute in Newark, Delaware, has successfully treated chemotherapy-resistant lung cancer cells with the CRISPR gene-editing technique. The study was published Dec. 21, 2018, in Molecular Therapy Oncolytics. In addition to making drug-resistant lung cancer cells treatable with chemotherapy, the approach offers the potential to improve quality of life for cancer patients. “In the broader sense, such an approach would ultimately lead to a reduced level of chemotherapy required to produce the same tumor-killing activity, leading to an improvement in the quality of life of a cancer patient,” the authors wrote. Although lung cancer was the focus of the study, the approach may also offer a new treatment avenue for mesothelioma. Many of the drugs currently in clinical trials for treating mesothelioma were studied first as lung cancer therapies. Chemotherapy Resistance Is Common Researchers studying thousands of patient biopsies found high rates of chemotherapy resistance in lung cancer tumors. More than two-thirds of lung cancers are resistant to carboplatin. For example, resistance to cisplatin — a common mesothelioma treatment — is present in 63 percent of samples. Scientists have searched for ways to address chemotherapy resistance for years. Now they have identified a potential solution. Targeting the Tumor, Not the Person A large portion of CRISPR research has focused on treating genetic diseases by altering h...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news

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Thoracic surgeon Dr. Robert Cameron and the Pacific Mesothelioma Center moved closer to a major treatment advance by obtaining U.S. patent approval for their novel mesenchymal stem cell research program. The patent approval in February makes the research program more attractive to potential investors who could accelerate development and change the way malignant mesothelioma is treated. “This is a big deal in the developmental path for MSC [mesenchymal stem cell] therapy,” Patent Adviser Dr. Walid Sabbagh told The Mesothelioma Center at Asbestos.com. “The patent is a pathway to really help these cancer pat...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that manufacturers are liable for asbestos-containing materials they did not make, distribute or install, but were needed for their equipment to function properly. The maritime-law ruling involved Navy veterans who were not warned about the danger of asbestos insulation added by a third party to pumps, turbines and blowers aboard three different ships. The ruling will allow cases filed originally by Navy veterans Kenneth McAfee and John DeVries to move forward against five manufacturers. Both veterans died from cancer during the course of litigation. The deaths have been attributed to a...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news
AbstractPurposeImmune-checkpoint inhibitors have shown great efficacy in clinical oncology and a very safe toxicity profile. Nevertheless, endocrine toxicity and, in particular, thyroid diseases are among the most frequently reported adverse events. The aim of this study was to assess the utility of a complete endocrine evaluation before starting therapy, in order to predict which patients will develop a thyroid disease and will need a close follow-up.MethodsTwenty-eight patients were treated with ipilimumab and nivolumab for non-small-cell lung cancer or malignant pleural mesothelioma. All patients underwent complete endo...
Source: Endocrine - Category: Endocrinology Source Type: research
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday confirmed the 2017 finding of asbestos contamination in children’s cosmetic products sold by retailers Claire’s and Justice. FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb and Susan Mayne, director of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, released a joint statement announcing the results of independent tests that confirmed asbestos contamination in three of the product samples from Claire’s and one of the samples from Justice. Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral often found near talc, a key ingredient in many cosmetic products. Exposure to asbestos can...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news
Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is the most common primary pleural tumor and aggressive neoplasm that arises from the mesothelium of the pleura. The prognosis is poor with a median survival of 9.2 to 11.2 months [1 –3], although a better prognosis with a median survival of 5 years is reported for MPM with germline BAP1 mutations [4,5]. In the diagnosis of MPM, it is important to differentiate it from reactive mesothelial hyperplasia (RMH). RMH is a benign process, but sometimes resembles MPM histologically a nd cytologically [6–8].
Source: Lung Cancer - Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Source Type: research
Thoracic surgeon Dr. Joseph Friedberg at the University of Maryland School of Medicine has identified previously underutilized lymph nodes that could change the way pleural mesothelioma is diagnosed, staged and treated. Friedberg is the head of the Division of Thoracic surgery at Maryland and director of the Mesothelioma and Thoracic Oncology Treatment and Research Center. The findings are based upon the posterior intercostal lymph nodes — a part of the lymphatic system between the ribs near the spine — in 56 mesothelioma patients who were part of a recent clinical trial. Friedberg detailed the groundbreaking f...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news
A biotechnology company specializing in innovative cancer therapeutics has opened a clinical trial examining an immunotherapy drug targeting a protein found in 90 percent of malignant mesothelioma tumors. It is the first clinical trial to specifically study a patient population characterized by this protein expression. The target is known as VISTA, a surface protein which inhibits the immune system from working properly and allows the mesothelioma to grow. The drug is CA-170, an orally available molecule and the only anti-VISTA drug being studied today in a cancer clinical trial. And the potential could be huge. “The...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news
Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive and invariably fatal cancer of the pleural surface that is associated with asbestos exposure [1]. MPM is usually detected at an advanced stage, therefore treatment options are limited to systemic chemotherapy with cisplatin and pemetrexed as the mainstay of palliative treatment for most patients [2]. Prognosis is generally poor for MPM, with a median survival of 12 months in patients treated with pemetrexed and cisplatin chemotherapy [3] but can be very variable, with around 5% of patients surviving more than 5 years [4].
Source: Lung Cancer - Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Source Type: research
A coalition of 15 attorneys general are calling for a tougher asbestos reporting rule as part of the recently-revised Toxic Substances Control Act. Maine’s newly elected Attorney General Aaron Frey said last week the coalition wants to eliminate the exemptions for asbestos within the current Chemical Data Reporting guidelines. The attorneys general have asked U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler to initiate a new rulemaking process, helping it comply with their interpretation of the legislation. “This [new] rule would allow the EPA to comply with the Act by giving it the info...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - Category: Environmental Health Authors: Source Type: news
Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive malignancy associated with exposure to asbestos, with poor prognosis and no effective therapies. The strong inhibitory activities of growth hormone-releasing hormone (GHRH) antagonists have been demonstrated in different experimental human cancers, including lung cancer; however, their role in MPM remains unknown. We assessed...
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences - Category: Science Authors: Tags: Biological Sciences Source Type: research
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