Asbestos Ban in Sweden Leads to Drop in Mesothelioma
The strict ban on asbestos more than 30 years ago in Sweden has produced a tangible decline in mesothelioma throughout the country. It has also helped fuel the growing debate about establishing a similar asbestos ban in the U.S. and Canada. "There is no good argument to use asbestos, anymore," senior professor Bengt Jarvholm, of the department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine at Umea University in Sweden, told Asbestos.com. "Especially [using it] in an industrialized country." No Argument for Not Banning Asbestos in US Jarvholm has spent much of his career studying the impact of asbestos exposure ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 31, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

Mrs. Florida Int'l Contestant Launches Mesothelioma Campaign
Vida Hargrett has a forum now — and she plans to use it. Hargrett, 30, has qualified for the 2016 Mrs. Florida International Pageant, hoping to utilize that platform to raise awareness for mesothelioma and the growing move to ban asbestos. Her goals are lofty. "I'm not afraid to speak up — and speak out," Hargrett said from her home in South Florida. "And this is a cause worth fighting for. I'll take this battle around the world if I can." Hargrett is the daughter-in-law of peritoneal mesothelioma survivor Patricia Hargrett, who has battled the asbestos-related cancer since October 2012. Her...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 27, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Celebrities Source Type: news

Toys 'R' Us, Other Retailers Remove Asbestos Crayons
Toys "R" Us, Party City, Amazon.com and Dollar Tree answered lawmakers' urgent call to pull toxic asbestos crayons and crime lab toys from their inventory. The major retailers acted after learning certain children’s products tested positive for asbestos, a carcinogen that causes several deadly diseases such as asbestosis and mesothelioma, which can take 20-50 years to develop after first exposure. “We commend these four companies for their good corporate citizenship and commitment to protecting children and families from contaminated products,” Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., wrote in a press release. ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 19, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Beth Swantek Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Mesothelioma Patients Under Age 40 Display Unique Traits
Researchers from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have uncovered some distinct differences in mesothelioma among a unique subset of patients under the age of 40, providing insight that could lead to a better understanding of this complex disease. Malignant mesothelioma is typically diagnosed in older patients who were exposed to asbestos decades ago in an occupational setting, but researchers recently isolated a smaller, much younger group and found some startling trends. These people survived much longer, were more likely to be female, and more likely to have peritoneal mesothelioma. The findings were in stark cont...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 17, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

New Bill Seeks to Create First Mesothelioma Registry in US
People diagnosed with mesothelioma often feel there is little public information about the asbestos-related cancer. Several existing state cancer registries focus on more common cancers, including lung, breast, prostate and colorectal. While there are more than 221,000 new lung cancer cases annually in the U.S., mesothelioma is rare — about 3,000 new cases each year. The Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program, a national cancer registry, tracks incidence rates by state, but it does not track new cases of mesothelioma at a national level. While it publishes fact sheets with information about new ca...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 12, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Beth Swantek Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

ADAO: Bill to Overhaul Chemical Regulation Lacks Bite
U.S. legislators may soon update the nation's antiquated Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) with a proposed bill aimed at strengthening existing laws that protect us from hazardous chemicals in our homes, schools and workplaces. But officials with the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) say the bill, known as the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act (S.697), lacks teeth. ADAO President Linda Reinstein says the proposed reform, expected to be heard when the U.S. Senate reconvenes in September, could be a rollback that handicaps the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency because it fails to ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 7, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

'Sugarbaker Walker' Is Key Mesothelioma Recovery Device
A custom-made thoracic walker designed by mesothelioma specialist Dr. David Sugarbaker almost 15 years ago continues to evolve, putting surgical patients back on their feet quicker to accelerate the postoperative recovery process. Some call it the "Sugarbaker Walker" — a virtual mobile recovery tool. "It's a very significant piece of equipment today," said Dr. Abraham Lebenthal, thoracic surgeon and mesothelioma specialist at the VA Boston Healthcare System and Brigham and Women's Hospital. "It can kick start the recovery process. Patients just do better with early ambulation." Dr. A...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 5, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Asbestos Puts Shipbreaking Workers at Risk for Many Cancers
This study was one of the few that involved only "shipbreaking," which is the dismantling of old ships for salvage or scrap. It also examined cancers beyond mesothelioma, a cancer caused almost exclusively by inhalation or ingestion of asbestos. The study, published in the on-line medical journal PLOS One, was linked to the Taiwan Cancer Registry and involved 4,227 workers from the 1985 Kaohsiung Shipbreaking Workers Union who belonged to the Labor Insurance Program. They were followed until 2008. There were 940 deaths and 436 cancer cases reported. Their numbers were compared to a control group of 22,135 who wor...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - August 4, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

Shocking Allegations of Asbestos Dumping at Kilgore College
The timing couldn't be worse for Kilgore College in Texas. School officials recently laid off several maintenance workers and forced others into early retirement. Their last day is Aug. 31. The cuts happened four months after they submitted signed affidavits to two state agencies describing how the school was illegally dumping asbestos and other hazardous waste on campus for decades, the Longview News-Journal reports. However, Kilgore College President Bill Holda denied the layoffs are related to the workers' allegations. Holda said layoff discussions began as early as 2010, years before workers sent the accusations to the...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 31, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Beth Swantek Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Seattle Cancer Center Using SMART Mesothelioma Treatment
A Toronto-based groundbreaking approach to treating mesothelioma has crossed the Canadian border and is now part of an innovative Seattle cancer treatment center. Officials at the Swedish Cancer Institute in Seattle recently adopted the Surgery for Mesothelioma After Radiation Therapy (SMART) approach that originated at the Princess Margaret Cancer Center in Toronto. The therapy is a significant shift from the traditional lower-dose, radiation-after-surgery method to a more high-intensity approach that has more than doubled the three-year survival rate for pleural mesothelioma patients. Officials at the Swedish Cancer...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 27, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Mesothelioma Centers Among Best Cancer Hospitals in US
U.S. News and World Report on Tuesday ranked the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, which has earned acclaim for its work with mesothelioma, as the top cancer care hospital in the nation. The Houston hospital scored high marks in the areas of reputation with specialists, patient survival rates, patient volume, nursing intensity, advance technologies and patient services, according to the publication's 2015-16 cancer center rankings. These rankings are designed to help patients and families identify facilities that excel in treating rare diseases and difficult cases. Several of the high-ranking hos...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 22, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

New Report: Asbestos Industry Ignored OSHA Guidelines
Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines for acceptable asbestos levels in the workplace air were regularly ignored in a variety of industries throughout the first decade of the 21st century, according to a recent study. An independent team of occupational toxicologists reviewed two OHSA databases from 1984 to 2011, and results showed airborne asbestos consistently exceeded permissible levels on myriad job sites across the country. The findings may help explain why the National Cancer Institute projected an estimated 55,000 new cases of mesothelioma in males in the next 40 years, desp...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 20, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

Lawmakers Urge Retailers to Pull Crayons, Toys with Asbestos
Two U.S. senators are pointing fingers at four retail giants — Party City, Dollar Tree, Toys "R" Us and Amazon.com — for continuing to stock and sell children’s toys, including crayons, that allegedly contain deadly asbestos. Sens. Ed Markey, D-Mass., and Dick Durbin, D-Ill., sent letters to the chief executive officers at the four retailers last week after the Environmental Working Group Action Fund (EWG) released a report showing traces of asbestos in crayons and crime-scene kits. "In light of the consumer safety concerns raised by this report, we write to encourage you to volun...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 14, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Beth Swantek Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

New Study Shows Aspirin May Prevent Mesothelioma
Simple aspirin could be the key to preventing or delaying the growth of malignant mesothelioma for those who spent years working in high-risk occupations, a new report shows. Researchers at the University of Hawaii Cancer Center concluded the popular over-the-counter medication can inhibit the growth of mesothelioma tumor cells by blocking the inflammatory effects of a particular molecule that plays a critical role in the progression of the disease. Although the study used lab mice, its relevance already has reached the clinical stage. "The findings were very convincing. The aspirin worked really well...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 13, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Are Children Safe from Asbestos Lurking in Their Crayons, Toys?
Recent reports of deadly asbestos discovered in crayons serve as a grim reminder that children may come in contact with the toxic substance where parents least expect it — their toys. Independent tests commissioned by the Environmental Working Group Action Fund (EWG) revealed that several toys manufactured in China and imported to the U.S., including crayons and amateur crime lab kits, contained asbestos fibers. "Even if the absolute risk is relatively low, children are more vulnerable to toxic material and carcinogens," said Dr. Richard Lemen, former U.S. Assistant Surgeon General and now a pr...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 10, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Outdated EPA Regulations May Increase Asbestos Exposure
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has an antiquated and inadequate policy in place that allows the release of asbestos-contaminated wastewater and threatens public health, according to the Office of Inspector General (OIG). The EPA's National Emission Standard for Asbestos, first issued in 1973, includes a provision that still permits the demolition of structurally unsound buildings without first removing asbestos products — often resulting in toxic runoff and contaminated soil. "Demolitions may be releasing potentially harmful amounts of asbestos into the environment," said Michael...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 6, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

NCI Is Seeking Mesothelioma Patients for New Clinical Trial
Patients with malignant mesothelioma can participate in an unprecedented clinical trial sponsored by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) that involves matching tumor-related genetic mutations with specific drugs that target the corresponding abnormality. The clinical trial has the potential to change cancer treatment in the future, allowing doctors to prescribe drugs based on the molecular cause of the cancer, not the origin or source of the cancer. It could enhance the potential for treatment success. "It is a unique, groundbreaking trial," said NCI Acting Director Dr. Doug Lowy, when he announced...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - July 2, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Microgene Therapy Offers New Hope for Mesothelioma Patients
Australian Bradley Selmon says climbing the stairs used to leave him breathless because of breathing complications from mesothelioma. But Selmon, 51, says he can now go bushwalking across Australia thanks to a breakthrough response to a new gene therapy to treat the asbestos-related cancer. “I can do whatever I like,” Selmon recently told ABC, an Australian news agency. After only eight weeks in a clinical trial that uses small genes called microRNA to suppress tumor growth, Selmon’s scan showed him almost clear of tumors after eight separate injections to his right lung. “He immedia...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 30, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Beth Swantek Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Veterans Department at The Mesothelioma Center Names New Director
Decorated U.S. Army Capt. Aaron Munz has joined The Mesothelioma Center and Asbestos.com as the new director of the advocacy group's Veterans Department. He was drawn by the opportunity to serve those with whom he once served so proudly. Munz, who received the Bronze Star Medal for Valor in 2004 during Operation Iraqi Freedom, has begun assisting military veterans diagnosed with asbestos-related diseases. He retired from active duty in 2007 after serving nine years in combat and strategic training, but he never lost the desire to work toward a common good. "My professional career has been focused on service, and helpi...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 25, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Veterans & Military Source Type: news

Asbestos Victims Committee Rejects Garlock Bankruptcy Plan
The committee of asbestos personal injury claimants in the ongoing bankruptcy case of Garlock Sealing Technologies (GST) is urging asbestos victims to reject the company's second amended reorganization plan. The committee is comprised of 12 asbestos victims, represented by their attorneys, who were appointed by the bankruptcy court that will determine whether the plan to restructure the business can move forward. The plan under debate would include $489.5 million to settle past and future claims over the next 40 years. It would cap the asbestos liability for Garlock and fundamentally change any future litiga...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 23, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

Immunotherapy with Surgery Raises Hopes for Mesothelioma Patients
An immunotherapy vaccine by itself won't stop malignant pleural mesothelioma, but its ability to enhance the effectiveness of cytoreductive surgery could become the treatment breakthrough that doctors and patients have been seeking for years. The combination of immunotherapy and surgery, which proved especially effective in preclinical research at the University of Pennsylvania, should add to the multimodal treatment approach that includes chemotherapy and radiation for mesothelioma patients. "It is very promising," renowned thoracic surgeon and mesothelioma specialist Dr. Sunil Singhal, of the Abra...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 18, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Disparities Discovered Among Blacks, Whites with Mesothelioma
This study suggests that further attention to the treatment of black patients is needed to determine if patient survival would be improved with better access to the same treatments as whites," the authors write. "Further studies on exposure history, access to care, type of medical and surgical treatment, and hospital characteristics in black patients with MPM are needed." (Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News)
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 17, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Ochsner Launches Mesothelioma Patient Assistance Fund
The renowned Ochsner Cancer Institute in New Orleans inaugurated its Mesothelioma Patient Assistance Fund — the first mesothelioma-specific fund at a major cancer center in the Southeast. The fund will provide much-needed financial relief for patients diagnosed with this asbestos-related disease. Patients coming to Ochsner for pleural or peritoneal mesothelioma treatment will be eligible for up to $1,500 in assistance to help cover expenses for them and their families. The funds may be used for travel, housing, meals, medication or various emergency needs related to care. Ochsner has carved a niche in r...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 11, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Bevacizumab May Be Next Standard of Care for Mesothelioma
Discussions About Mesothelioma at ASCO Meeting There were other abstracts involving mesothelioma presented at the ASCO, adding even more optimism about potential treatment advances. Dr. Raffit Hassan, mesothelioma specialist from the National Cancer Institute, detailed results of a phase I trial involving immunotherapy drug CRS-207 in combination with standard chemotherapy. Disease control was obtained in 30 of the 32 trial participants. There was partial response in 19 patients and stable disease in 11. CRS-207 is given by vaccination. Median duration of response was 5 months and median progression-free survi...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 5, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Surgery Extends Survival for Pleural Mesothelioma Patients
Thoracic surgeon and mesothelioma specialist Dr. Andrea Wolf likes to use the analogy that you don't need a randomized trial to know that skydivers with a parachute generally will fare better than those jumping without one. She compares it to surgery for patients with pleural mesothelioma. You don't need a randomized trial to know that surgical patients will do better than non-surgical ones. "Unfortunately, surgery is still an ongoing controversy with mesothelioma, about whether you should have it. I hear that a lot," Dr. Wolf of Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City told Asbestos.com. "But taking all thing...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 3, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Mr. Fluffy Asbestos Disclosure Burdens Real Estate Agents
The ongoing Mr. Fluffy asbestos insulation debacle in Australia is placing a heavy burden on unprepared real estate agents who must disclose if the homes they sell contain the deadly substance. Real estate agents in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), where more than 1,000 homes in Canberra were identified to contain asbestos, are obligated by law to disclose the presence of asbestos or face fines of $1 million or more. But in New South Wales (NSW), where more than a dozen homes showed asbestos contamination, officials say real estate agents and property managers have no clear guidelines. Thousands more homes may be af...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - June 1, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Lorraine Kember Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

Impressive Survival Time for Peritoneal Mesothelioma Patients
The prognosis for patients with peritoneal mesothelioma has improved considerably in recent years, leaving behind the pessimism that often still engulfs those with pleural mesothelioma. The survival-time gap between peritoneal and pleural — the two most common types of mesothelioma cancer — has grown significantly wider with advances in therapy. According to a recent study done at Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the median survival for a peritoneal patient is more than four times that of a patient diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma. "The take-home message here ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 29, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

Russia, India Block Proposal to Restrict Asbestos Exports
For the fifth consecutive time, a handful of countries blocked a United Nations proposal that effectively would have restricted the exportation of dangerous chrysotile asbestos. Russia, India, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Kazakhstan, Cuba and Kyrgyzstan stopped the proposal to put the toxic mineral on the Rotterdam Convention Hazardous Substances list, which would have tightened shipping regulations and likely reduced the spread of asbestos. Although an overwhelming majority of countries represented last week in Geneva, Switzerland, backed the U.N. proposal, there was no unanimous consensus, which the Rotterdam Convention require...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 20, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

Study Finds UK Must Improve Mesothelioma Care
The United Kingdom needs a more universal, multidisciplinary approach to the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma to improve survival times and overcome the no-hope attitude that too often surrounds this diagnosis. Researchers in the U.K. analyzed 8,740 mesothelioma cases from England and Wales over a five-year period and found a startling variation in how doctors manage the disease, sparking a call for more experienced specialty centers to treat it. Researchers also estimated that the incidence of mesothelioma will continue to rise in the U.K. until it peaks in 2020, despite the decades-long decline in the use an...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 16, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Fish Oil Supplements Could Harm Cancer Patients
Taking common fish oil supplements — or even eating a particular fish — may reduce the effectiveness of chemotherapy for cancer patients, including those with malignant mesothelioma, according to a new study. Doctors and scientists from the Netherlands Cancer Institute in Amsterdam last month found clear, tumor resistance to chemotherapy in pre-clinical models. They determined fish oil can be detrimental. "We currently advise our [cancer] patients not to take fish oil in the days surrounding chemotherapy treatment," lead researcher, Dr. Laura van Hussen-Daenen, told Asbestos.com. "Fish oil supple...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 14, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Immunotherapy Clinical Trial Opens in Chicago
Internationally recognized mesothelioma specialist Dr. Hedy Kindler is recruiting patients for what could become a groundbreaking clinical trial at the University of Chicago Medicine's Comprehensive Cancer Center. Her expectations are high. There are 90 different clinical trials in various stages around the country today testing pembrolizumab — the hottest new immunotherapy cancer drug — but only one trial involves malignant mesothelioma. The University of Chicago has it. "This is really exciting," she told the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation last month. "This is an exciting class ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 8, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

Woman Wins $13M for Deadly Asbestos in Talcum Powder
A California woman won a $13 million lawsuit against Colgate-Palmolive after a jury determined she developed mesothelioma from asbestos in the company's Cashmere Bouquet talcum powder. Judith Winkel, 73, told the court she used the popular scented talcum powder from 1961 to 1976. It wasn't until 1973 that federals laws required commercial talcum products to be asbestos-free. Although researchers have debated the connection between talc and cancer for years, last week's verdict was the first against Colgate-Palmolive for asbestos exposure from commercial talcum powder. Talc, one of the world's softest minerals, has been min...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 5, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

Alarming Spike in Imported Asbestos Products in Canada
The importation of asbestos into Canada increased by a startling 22 percent in 2014, raising safety concerns for the unsuspecting general public and those still working with the toxic products. Brake pads and brake linings were the most popular asbestos import, valued at a seven-year high of $3.6 million, according to The Globe and Mail news service research. Other related imports included various friction materials, compressed asbestos fiber jointing and shipments of crocidolite fibers — the most dangerous form of asbestos. Much of the findings came from Statistics Canada, a government website that provides economic...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - May 1, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Powerful Skin Cancer Drug Stops Mesothelioma Tumor Growth
A groundbreaking immunotherapy drug that effectively treats skin cancer stopped tumor growth in 76 percent of patients diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma, a recent study shows. Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine reported their findings involving pembrolizumab, a drug marketed under the brand name Keytruda, earlier this week at the American Association of Cancer Research (AACR) annual meeting in Philadelphia. Twenty-five patients with mesothelioma whose disease had progressed after receiving first-line or standard chemotherapy participated in the study. Researchers administered pembr...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 27, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Asbestos in Schools, Hospitals Puts Children and Doctors at Risk
When Heather Karras learned the Alabama elementary school her children attend contains asbestos, she pulled them out — and asked for answers. Delayed responses from Bay Minette Elementary School officials raised fears the deteriorating 1920s-era school possibly was placing children, teachers and anyone else who visits the building at risk of asbestos exposure. Asbestos causes mesothelioma, an often terminal cancer that affects nearly 3,000 people annually in the U.S. “What did I do?” Karras told Asbestos.com. “I thought we moved here to have a better life at this old hometown school. I made the wors...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 24, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Beth Swantek Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Asbestos in Schools, Hospitals Puts Children and Doctors at Risk
When Heather Karras learned the Alabama elementary school her children attend contains asbestos, she pulled them out — and asked for answers. Delayed responses from Bay Minette Elementary School officials raised fears the deteriorating 1920s-era school possibly was placing children, teachers and anyone else who visits the building at risk of asbestos exposure. Asbestos causes mesothelioma, an often terminal cancer that affects nearly 3,000 people annually in the U.S. “What did I do?” Karras told Asbestos.com. “I thought we moved here to have a better life at this old hometown school. I made the wors...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 24, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Mesothelioma Patients Live Longer After Aggressive Cancer Surgery
Aggressive pleurectomy/decortication surgery, while often recommended, will cause a significant decrease in pulmonary function with early-stage mesothelioma patients whose symptoms were previously minimal. More symptomatic patients with advanced disease will experience an improved quality of life and a preservation of their current pulmonary status after the same surgery. Those findings were reported in a study from the Department of Surgery, Division of Oncology at the University of Chicago Medical Center, raising questions about aggressive surgery for the early stages of mesothelioma. "Some of the results might be a...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 23, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Upcoming Mesothelioma Symposium Will Focus on Latest Research
Renowned specialist and thoracic surgeon Dr. Robert Cameron, who has pioneered many of the worldwide treatment advances in recent years, will host the 5th Symposium on Lung-Sparing Therapies for Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma on May 2. The symposium will be held at the LeMeridien Delfina in Santa Monica, California, close to the UCLA Mesothelioma Comprehensive Research Program, where Cameron serves as director. Although the symposium is designed for physicians, nurses, oncologists, radiologists and pulmonologists, it also will be open to patients, families and anyone wanting to learn more about the latest advancements in t...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 21, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

Asbestos Forces Young Family from Their 'Mr. Fluffy Home'
On a sunny afternoon in the Australian capital city of Canberra, Katie Williams and Daniel Lawrence brought their newborn son, Hugh, home from the hospital. Like any new parents, they were excited, especially because Hugh was the “miracle” in vitro fertilization baby they had longed for. The pair placed Hugh’s baby carrier on the porch outside the front door and snapped photos to mark the occasion. Then Williams broke down, bursting into tears. Despite welcoming a newborn into their lives and their home, it was not the family homecoming they wished for. Four years after purchasing the property, the couple...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 17, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Apple Is Bringing Clinical Trials to Your Fingertips
Trusting smartphone apps to help manage the details of life is commonplace in this digital age. There are dozens of applications on multiple platforms that help users manage their finances, schedule appointments and control their weight. Now, one of the biggest app developers in the world wants to revolutionize how our devices manage disease and possibly provide better outcomes. Apple recently launched ResearchKit, a digital tool equipped with iPhone apps created specifically for medical research. The first five ResearchKit apps include: Parkinson mPower Share the Journey (for breast cancer) GlucoSuccess (for diabetes) A...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 16, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

New Clinical Trial Shows Promise for Life-Extending Mesothelioma Drug
Dr. Michele Maio at the University Hospital of Siena in Italy doesn't need to wait for results of the ongoing, multicenter, worldwide clinical trial involving the latest immunotherapy drug for malignant mesothelioma. He already is a believer. Maio and his colleagues in the oncology department recently published results of their smaller, one-center study detailing the effectiveness of tremelimumab, a drug that helps the body's own immune system to destroy mesothelioma cells without harming healthy ones. Tremelimumab, which is given intravenously, essentially unmasks the tumor cells and unleashes the immune system to do its ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 13, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

FDA Approves New Use for Immunotherapy Drug in Mesothelioma Treatment
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted orphan drug designation last week to the immunotherapy vaccine CRS-207, moving it one step closer to changing the way malignant pleural mesothelioma is treated. CRS-207 is derived from Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium that causes the serious infection listeriosis. For the vaccine, the bacteria are weakened and genetically modified to produce an anti-tumor response without causing disease. Early results are impressive. The vaccine produced a 94 percent rate of disease control, either partial response or stable disease, according to a presentation made at the latest Inte...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 7, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

New Mesothelioma Treatment Options Are Emerging for Patients
Although no definitive cure is in sight, the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma has entered a promising, much-anticipated phase that goes beyond the multimodal approach that has been the standard of care at specialty centers for the past several years. There is new hope on the horizon. Thoracic surgeon and renowned mesothelioma specialist Dr. Robert Cameron, along with scientist Raymond Wong, Ph.D., and thoracic and cardia surgeon Dr. Svetlana Kotova, recently detailed the changing face of therapy in a paper they co-authored and published in the Cancer Management Research Journal . "With all the ongoing r...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - April 2, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

Demolition Begins of 'Mr. Fluffy Homes' Contaminated with Asbestos
Australian officials this month will start bulldozing a handful of homes and public buildings contaminated with deadly Mr. Fluffy asbestos insulation. The pilot demolition program is part of the Australian Capital Territory’s (ACT) massive "buyback and demolish" program aimed at eradicating the ongoing risk of asbestos exposure from Mr. Fluffy-brand loose-fill asbestos found in 1,021 homes in Canberra. A spokesperson for the Asbestos Response Taskforce confirmed that more than half of homeowners whose residences are affected by the toxic insulation agreed to the ACT government's offer to purchase their p...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 25, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Lorraine Kember Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Indirect Exposure to Asbestos Is Still Risky for Sheet Metal Workers
Sheet metal workers rarely handle asbestos directly, but they remain seven times more likely to die from mesothelioma – the rare cancer caused by it – than the general population, a recent study shows. The findings published earlier this year in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine reiterated the long-held but increasingly-debated belief that even indirect exposure to toxic asbestos remains a serious threat, long after its use as a building material was reduced dramatically in the U.S. "The most important thing to take from this study is that you didn't have to work with asbestos directly to be in d...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 24, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news

Senate Bill Aims to Create Online Database of Asbestos Products
Despite the almost 10,000 lives a year claimed by asbestos-related diseases in the U.S., products legally containing asbestos continue to pass through our country’s borders. Legislation introduced this week will make public where these products are ending up. U.S. senators Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., and Dick Durbin, D-Ill., sponsored the Reducing Exposure to Asbestos Database (READ) Act to amend the Asbestos Information Act of 1988 by establishing a public database of asbestos-containing products. “The Reducing Exposure to Asbestos Database (READ) Act will modernize the reporting requirements of the Asbesto...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 17, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Tags: Legislation, Laws & Litigation Source Type: news

New Lung Cancer Drug Opdivo May Hold Hope for Mesothelioma Patients
Federal approval of the highly-touted immunotherapy drug Opdivo for advanced squamous non-small cell lung cancer may signal good news for malignant pleural mesothelioma patients. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration earlier this month granted accelerated approval to Opdivo, also known as nivolumab, after it showed an unprecedented ability to prolong the lives of lung cancer patients with metastatic disease. Opdivo, marketed by Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, is designed to inhibit the protein on cells that blocks the body's immune system from attacking the cancer. Immunotherapy, which most believe is the future of cancer ...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 16, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

UK Study Shows Promise for Epithelioid Mesothelioma Patients
In this study, it accounted for 73 of the 103 cases — or 71.5 percent. Those generally responded best to treatment. The one, two and five-year survival rates for epithelial types in the study were 94.5 percent, 76.5 percent and 30.7 percent, respectively. The patients were from January 2004 to December 2013. Almost half still are alive, according to the study report. Median age of the patients was 64.7 years at time of surgery and 24 patients were older than 70. The overall median survival was 32 months, considerably longer than the estimated 6-18 months that patients often survive in the U.S. if they don't find a m...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 12, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Treatment & Doctors Source Type: news

EPA: Asbestos Is Not a Threat to Residents of Libby, Montana
The Environmental Protection Agency says the picturesque mountain town of Libby, Montana — once contaminated by deadly asbestos — is safe again for residents. After 15 years of asbestos cleanup, the federal agency released its long-delayed health assessment in December 2014, stating that while it's impossible to remove all asbestos from Libby and nearby Troy, "air asbestos concentrations today are up to 100,000 times lower than when the [asbestos] mine and processing facilities were operating." "Our risk assessment shows that EPA’s indoor and outdoor cleanups have been effective in reducing...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 11, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Asbestos Exposure & Bans Source Type: news

Lymphoma Drug May Kill Some Mesothelioma Cells
A subset of mesothelioma patients may soon be treated with Adcetris, a drug currently used to treat Hodgkin's disease and large-cell lymphoma. The possible breakthrough stems from the recent identification of the protein CD30 in a small but distinct percentage of mesothelioma cells lines, providing a new target for treatment of the asbestos-related cancer. Cancer researchers at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland first discovered that Adcetris, also known as brentuximab vedotin, effectively slowed the growth of mesothelioma cells that contained CD30. Lead researcher and hematologist Dr. Afshin Dowlati told Asbes...
Source: Asbestos and Mesothelioma News - March 5, 2015 Category: Environmental Health Authors: Tim Povtak Tags: Research & Clinical Trials Source Type: news