Mesothelioma Lawyer

New Mesothelioma Treatments: Anti-Angiogenesis Drugs

New Mesothelioma Treatments: Anti-Angiogenesis Drugs

Mesothelioma is a type of lung cancer and for many decades now, all cancers have been a challenge to treat. Much of the research has focused on the differences between normal cells and cancer cells. Chemotherapy is such a stressful and difficult process to go through because the drugs hitherto used have not been able to confine their effects to cancer cells. They have affected normal cells as well, all those which have relatively fast growth cycles. So patients lose hair, and have stomach upsets and mouth sores because those cells divide rapidly and can’t be differentiated from cancerous cells.

What is Angiogenesis?
The anti-angiogenesis drugs are a group of new drugs which can spare the body’s normal cells while targeting only the cancer cells. Angiogenesis is the term for the production of new blood cells. When the body is growing, it creates new blood vessels to nourish the new body cells. In an adult who develops a cancerous tumor, the body mistakenly does the same thing.

At first the small tumor uses the existing local blood supply but as it grows it needs new veins and arteries. The body creates them, which facilitates cancerous growth. Anti-angiogenesis drugs are designed to prevent these new blood vessels from forming, thus preventing tumor growth. They might be able to both shrink existing tumors and prevent new ones from forming.

In some cases angiogenesis drugs are being combined with traditional chemotherapy drugs, as testing done so far has yielded better results and longer survival.

Current Testing
The first of the angiogenesis drugs obtained FDA approval in 2004 for treating metastatic colon cancer. Currently there are three drugs in Phase II testing for untreated mesothelioma (cisplatin, pemetrexed and bevacizumab); and two are in Phase II testing for previously-treated mesothelioma. Hundreds of others are in various other testing phases for mesothelioma and some are still enrolling patients with malignant mesothelioma.

To learn more about your legal rights and options, please contact our experienced mesothelioma attorneys today.