Various treatments for mesothelioma have been developed, yet none have been found to extend the lives of mesothelioma patients beyond a few months. Residents of Kentucky should know that the use of immune checkpoint inhibitors is also ineffective, the reason being that mesothelioma can keep dendritic cells, which are immune system cells, from activating the T-cells that can attack the cancer.

This is where dendritic cell therapy might be able to improve current mesothelioma treatments. This is a form of therapy newly developed by Amphera B.V. and uses the company’s own product for treating mesothelioma. This drug, called MesoPher, is currently designated as an orphan drug because it shows great promise.

As part of the therapy, a patient’s dendritic cells are removed and “reprogrammed” to prompt T-cells, as well as NK-cells and B-cells, to attack cancer before being injected back into the patient. In a test involving nine mesothelioma patients, Amphera provided MesoPher to the patients before they underwent dendritic cell therapy. The resulting disease control rate among the nine was 88%.

In a separate study, 230 mesothelioma patients who are undergoing chemotherapy are receiving three biweekly injections of MesoPher for “maintenance” purposes. It remains to be seen if chemotherapy patients are able to live longer with this drug.

Most people know that mesothelioma is frequently caused by asbestos exposure. Over a million construction workers in the US are exposed to this mineral every year, and others can come in contact with it through cosmetics and other talc products. Individuals who develop the cancer and believe that there is a responsible party may be able to file a claim. They may want to consult with a lawyer for advice and guidance, though, especially when it comes to gathering evidence and negotiating a settlement.