Novel approaches for the treatment of unresectable malignant pleural mesothelioma: A focus on immunotherapy and target therapy (Review)

Molecular and Clinical Oncology 2022 April [Link]

Erika Rijavec, Federica Biello, Giulia Barletta, Chiara Dellepiane, Carlo Genova

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is considered a relatively uncommon disease but its incidence is increasing worldwide. Patients affected by MPM have a very severe prognosis and have been often occupationally and environmentally exposed to asbestos. In recent years, checkpoint inhibitors have dramatically revolutionized the paradigm for the treatment of several malignancies. Several efforts have also been made to improve the survival outcomes of patients with MPM and after decades, the standard-of-care systemic treatment for unresectable MPM, based on first-line combination chemotherapy with cisplatin and pemetrexed, has changed. In addition to checkpoint inhibitors, other types of treatments, such as molecularly targeted therapy have been evaluated. However, to date, the results of these investigations are not very encouraging. The aim of the present review is to provide a comprehensive overview of the most relevant data of clinical trials regarding recent treatment strategies of MPM with a particular focus on immunotherapeutic and targeted approaches.