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New Mesothelioma Treatments

After 20 years since its last development, an advancement has been found in mesothelioma treatments. Scientists have discovered a treatment called pegylated arginine deiminase or better recognized as ADI-PEG20. This treatment assists in medicating a rare form of cancer named mesothelioma, which attacks the mesothelial cells in the tissue layering vital organs such as the lungs, heart, abdomen, and testicles. The most common cause of mesothelioma is exposure to asbestos, a natural mineral used for insulation. The predominant types of treatment for this rare form of cancer include chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. However, ADI-PEG20 has showed significant results in extending the survival period of individuals diagnosed with the disease.


Gene Expression

What was discovered in a study aiming to understand the reason for relapse in some mesothelioma patients while on ADI-PEG20 therapy was the importance of macrophages? Macrophages are a type of white blood cell that kills microorganisms, removes dead cells, and stimulates the action of other immune system cells” (“NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms”). The investigation found that individuals with genetic deficiencies like ASS1 in macrophages, foster the survival of infected mesothelial cells.


Experiment with New Mesothelioma Treatment

A preliminary experiment with animal models was conducted and it was discovered that reducing the macrophages with liposomal clodronate, a common antimacrophage agent, suppressed the tumor growth. Following this, a study was conducted with individuals diagnosed with mesothelioma and found similar effects. The trial was recognized as ATOMIC-meso which stands for “ADI-PEG20 Targeting of Malignancies Induces Cytotoxicity-Mesothelioma” (Szlosarek et al.).The new treatment of ADI-PEG20 was taking place alongside the traditional chemotherapy treatment.


Results of New Mesothelioma Treatment

In action, the new treatment has aided in extending the survival rates among patients diagnosed with mesothelioma. This is extremely significant as mesothelioma diagnosis has been recognized to attribute a survival rate of  “4 to 18 months after diagnosis”(“Mesothelioma Prognosis and Factors | Penn Medicine”). The treatment of ADI-PEG20 works by actively “depleting arginine levels in the bloodstream” (Gregory). The survival rate has been found to increase “the median survival of participants by 1.6 months and quadrupled the survival at 36 months”(“New Treatment for a Rare and Aggressive Cancer Improves Survival Rates in Breakthrough Clinical Trial”). The current state of this treatment is still however being investigated to find further supporting evidence of its effects.

If you or someone you know has been affected mesothelioma in the state of Pennsylvania, please call The Halpern Law Firm at 1 (800) 505-6000 for more information.

  • ‌ Phillips, Melissa M., et al. “A Role for Macrophages under Cytokine Control in Mediating Resistance to ADI-PEG20 (Pegargiminase) in ASS1-Deficient Mesothelioma.” Pharmacological Reports, vol. 75, no. 3, Elsevier BV, Apr. 2023, pp. 570–84, Accessed 26 Feb. 2024.
  • ‌Szlosarek, Peter W., et al. “Pegargiminase plus First-Line Chemotherapy in Patients with Nonepithelioid Pleural Mesothelioma.” JAMA Oncology, American Medical Association, Feb. 2024,  Accessed 28 Feb. 2024

By Ashley Navarrete

Don’t Wait—Contact an Experienced Pennsylvania Mesothelioma Attorney Today!

Now that you know the mesothelioma statute of limitations in Pennsylvania, contact an experienced attorney from our firm to represent your case before time runs out.

At Halpern Law Firm, we help clients throughout Pennsylvania, with offices in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Allentown, Scranton and Johnstown. Call us today for a free consultation at (800) 505-6000.


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David brenton


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