Immunotherapy Trials Take Big Steps for Mesothelioma Treatment

DREAM Clinical Trial Produces Encouraging Results

A clinical trial hosted in Australia may have victorious results in treating pleural mesothelioma. However, researchers agree that more testing needs to occur.

During the study, 54 patients were recruited. They were treated with first-line chemotherapy (cisplatin and pemetrexed) and the immunotherapy drug durvalumab.

For up to six treatment cycles, participants received chemotherapy and durvalumab. Patients continued receiving durvalumab on its own until they completed 12 months of treatment or their mesothelioma progressed.

Presently, researchers are pleased with their results. They discovered that the addition of durvalumab with cisplatin and pemetrexed worked better than chemotherapy on its own. Not only did patients tolerate the drug combination, but 71% experienced a progression-free survival rate at six months.

Later this year researchers will release their finalized report.

Using Immunotherapy to Treat Mesothelioma

There is one treatment that is changing the way that mesothelioma patients combat their disease. That treatment is immunotherapy.

Currently, this treatment option is still considered an experimental approach to treating mesothelioma. The only way a patient can experience it is by enrolling in a clinical trial or on a compassionate care basis.

Immunotherapy cancer drugs are designed to use a patient’s immune system to help combat their disease. It is a form of targeted therapy that avoids a patient’s healthy cells and zones in on attacking only their cancerous mesothelioma cells.

Learn more about how immunotherapy works in our short video:

Several mesothelioma patients, especially late stage, have had positive treatment experiences. Immunotherapy has fewer side effects, and it has exhibited signs of slowing down and managing a patient’s disease.

U.S. Clinical Trial Results TBA

In the United States, a clinical trial similar to DREAM is presently active in 20 different locations. 55 participants are currently enrolled. The study started in 2017 and anticipates to have results by 2020.

Patients enrolled in this trial have been diagnosed with pleural mesothelioma. These individuals are also not surgical candidates that can experience procedures like EPP or P/D.

The goal of this phase II study is similar to the Australian clinical trial. Researchers hope to have the same success in pairing durvalumab with standard chemotherapy and improve a patient’s overall survival.

Primary investigator of the trial is Dr. Patrick Forde. He is a well-respected name in the mesothelioma community. Dr. Forde is active in both researching and treating patients at the Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center in Maryland.

Immunotherapy for Mesothelioma at Johns Hopkins

Johns Hopkins is home to the Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy (BKI). The institute was established in 2016. However, medical experts at Johns Hopkins have been actively involved in pioneering immunotherapy drugs for almost 30 years.

“Immunotherapy is a game changer. We believe that a patient’s own immune system can ultimately beat any cancer,” states the official website for BKI.

For more information about immunotherapy treatment, clinical trials, and John Hopkins, please contact Jenna Campagna, RN. You may reach here by calling 888-385-2024 extension 102 or by emailing jenna@mesotheliomaguide.com.

Nicole Godfrey :Nicole Godfrey is the Senior Content Writer for Mesothelioma Guide. She writes and edits pages to make sure that mesothelioma patients and their families receive the most current and significant information about mesothelioma.