Current treatments and trials in malignant pleural mesothelioma.

The Clinical Respiratory Journal 2018 July 12 [Link]

Bibby AC, Maskell NA


This article aims to review the evidence from recent clinical trials in mesothelioma, and to provide an overview of relevant clinical trials that are currently in progress.
Ovid MEDLINE, 1946 to present.
Clinical trials of therapeutic interventions were considered for inclusion, regardless of phase. Of 258 papers identified in the literature search, 88 were potentially eligible based on abstract screening. Following evaluation of full-text articles, 35 were selected for inclusion in the review.
Since the original trial that demonstrated the efficacy of pemetrexed and cisplatin in mesothelioma, multiple trials have been conducted that have further informed management options. Anti-angiogenesis agents such as bevacizumab and nintedanib appear promising as adjuncts to first-line chemotherapy. Meanwhile, immunotherapy, anti-mesothelin agents and molecular targeted therapies are potential areas for development, with ongoing trials promising to deliver interesting results over the next few years. Current evidence does not support surgical intervention; however, investigations are ongoing as to the role of extended pleurectomy/decortication, and surgery in the context of trapped lung. Finally radiotherapy is effective as a palliative measure for pain control, but is not indicated prophylactically to prevent the development of procedure tract metastases.
A large amount of high-quality mesothelioma research has been conducted in the past decade. As a result, several new therapies are likely to become available in clinical practice in the near future. With multiple trials ongoing, the horizon for patients with mesothelioma looks brighter than ever before.