GRAPHENE – New Research
That May Help Mesothelioma Victims
An international team of researchers has developed a drug delivery technique that utilizes GRAPHENE strips as “flying carpets” to deliver drugs to cancer cells. The technique was found to perform better well when tested in a mouse model targeting a human lung cancer tumor.
Graphene Tests Succeed
GRAPHENE successfully proved itself in lab tests against six kinds of cancer cells. Flaked Graphene oxide preferentially hits these cancers right in the stem cells.
The Graphene strip works when a cancer drug treatment can be physically integrated and bound to it because of similar molecular structures of Graphene and the drug. So, various drug treatments can be attached to the surface of the Graphene by a combination of amino acids known as peptides.
Dr. Parkish Gill, on behalf of the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America will determine if there is a way to apply and proceed with his non-chemotherapy treatments using the Graphene strip technique.
Mesothelioma awareness fits the focus of Rare Disease Day 2013
The fifth annual U.S. Rare Disease Day was held on February 28th. Organized and supported by the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD), this event has been created to direct public attention on approximately 7,000 rare diseases that affect almost 30 million people in America. And among the rare “orphaned” disorders is Mesothelioma, the asbestos-related cancer disease which affects one-tenth of the American population.
Orphan disease status is assigned to any disease or disorder that fewer than 200,000 people in the United States. Mesothelioma cancer, for example, has about 3,000 people in American that are diagnosed each year with the disease. Rare Disease Day is an international advocacy day designated to raise public awareness of rare diseases, such as Mesothelioma, and increase recognition globally with a concern solving rare disease effects.
According to NORD president and CEO, Peter Saltonsall, “There are nearly 30 million Americans—and millions more around the world—affected by rare diseases”
“Everyone knows someone with a rare disease. But, while many of these diseases are serious and lifelong, most have no treatment and many are not even being studied by researchers. This leaves patients and families without hope for a better future.”
Because mesothelioma is relative rare, as are other orphan diseases, managing this cancer and attempting to discover appropriate treatment is sometimes overwhelming to the patient and their family. And based on government statistics, orphan diseases are serious or life-threatening to 85-90 percent of patients, and still as few as 200 of theses diseases like mesothelioma have any effective treatments currently.
Mesothelioma Cancer and the National Organization for Rare Disorders
This years conference theme for 2013 is global in focus, called “Rare Disorders Without Borders.” The day will have special significance for the United States since this year 2013 is the 30th anniversary of the congressional Orphan Drug Act. Therefore, there are additional incentives that should encourage U.S. companies to develop treatments for rare diseases, as well as for N.O.R.D. which was established in 1983 by advocates of patients with rare disorders like mesothelioma cancer.
N.O.R.D. set the 2013 program for Rare Disease Day to include activities in the U.S. that place a spotlight on awareness events at many State Houses, a Rare Disease Research Hall of Fame, a Handprints Across America photo gallery, and an event at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, MD.
Even after the passing of this special day, we still need your support and advocacy, so you still can get more information about Rare Disease Day activities for the United States at: www.rarediseaseday.us. And additional information about global activities can be found at: www.rarediseaseday.org.
Mesothelioma diagnosis typically begins with a sufferer’s visit to the doctor complaining of chronic chest pain. This pain is caused as a result of a buildup of fluid inside the pleural space; this is called pleural effusion and is the most common presenting symptom of malignant mesothelioma.
Preliminary mesothelioma detection can be achieved through a chest imagery scan (CT scan, x-ray); however, mesothelioma is often misdiagnosed as viral pneumonia at this stage because of certain symptomatic similarities between the two. The only way to definitively verify a suspected case of malignant mesothelioma is through a biopsy.
A biopsy is a relatively minor procedure (dependent on the location of the tumor) during which a small section of suspect tissue is removed. The removed section is examined by a histopathologist, an expert in the study of diseased tissue. Histopathological examination can confirm a case of malignant mesothelioma while also typing and staging it. Understanding the type and stage can help doctors suggest the best of treatment.
You can also have your questions about malignant mesothelioma and clinical trials for new cures, answered for free by Dr. Gill at the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America by clicking here: Ask Dr. Gill
Pericardial Mesothelioma is an extremely difficult cancer to treat and presently, all treatment methods used have a poor success rate. The chances of a patient’s survival depend largely on how early and how aggressively the cancer is treated. If pericardial mesothelioma is treated when it has fully matured and developed then the chances of survival are very slim and the prognosis for a patient could be only a couple of months. The latency period of pericardial mesothelioma (20 – 50 years), and its symptoms which are ordinary of other more common diseases such as pneumonia, make it extremely difficult to diagnose and therefore difficult to treat in its early stages. In this way, a lot of pericardial mesothelioma treatments do not aim to cure patients but instead focus on reducing the symptoms.
Before a patient is treated, a doctor will evaluate him or her, and afterwards decide which treatment method is most suitable for the patient’s situation. The patient’s age, medical history, general well being and even weight are taken into account before the doctor will decide which of the three treatments are most appropriate. These treatments are surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy.
There are two different types of surgery that can be used one of which is called aggressive surgery. This is the most dangerous of all the treatment methods available and only the fittest of people are deemed strong enough to undergo this. Aggressive surgery consists of removing large chunks of cancerous cells from inside the patient. This is extremely dangerous in the case of pericardial mesothelioma seeing as the cancerous cells are in extremely close proximity to vital organs such as the heart and lungs. Extremely skilled surgeons are needed to perform this operation.
The second type of surgery is palliative procedures and this type of surgery is used only for the purpose of reducing the symptoms of the cancer. Palliative procedures are performed when pericardial mesothelioma is in its latest stages and is practically impossible to cure.
Chemotherapy is the most well known cure of cancers and involves using drugs to kill of cancerous cells. However, many of the drugs used do not have a high success rate although researchers are discovering new combinations of drugs that work more effectively. Many pharmaceutical companies are also endeavouring to find new drugs. Researchers predict that they will soon discover a drug with a significantly improved success rate.
This form of treatment uses doses of radiation to kill cancerous cells. However, in the case of pericardial mesothelioma this is extremely difficult because as well as damaging cancerous cells, the radiation also damages vital organs such as the heart and lungs. This makes using radiation therapy most effectively extremely difficult. The dose of radiation is usually too weak to make a significant impact on curing pericardial mesothelioma.
Dual therapy is just a combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy. This consists of using surgery to remove the majority of the cancer cells and then using chemotherapy and radiation therapy to kill off any remaining cells. This has proved to be an effective treatment method however also very dangerous. Only the fittest young people are able to undergo this treatment.
Non-Chemotherapy Veglin Drug: Clinical Trials
Veglin is an anti-angiogenesis non-chemotherapy drug (angiogenesis inhibitor) that was developed by Dr. Parkash S. Gill, Oncologist and Lead Contributor for the Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America, for the treatment of a variety of malignancies including mesothelioma. Veglin is one of several newly developed non-chemotherapy drugs being tested for possible utilization in the ongoing struggle to combat malignant mesothelioma.
About Veglin as an Angiogenesis Drug
Angiogenesis refers to the physiological process by which new blood vessels are formed from existing blood vessels. Angiogenesis is a natural process of cellular growth and development; however, it also fuels tumor metastasis (spread and growth of cancer). Tumors have a limited capacity to grow unaided. In order to continue to grow and metastasize, tumors require a continuous flow of oxygen and essential nutrients. In order for tumors to receive such a continuous flow, they require blood vessel growth into the cancerous mass. Tumors induce the required blood vessel growth by secreting a variety of growth factors (VEGF). It is believed (and proven effective in early clinical trials) that preventing the formation of new blood vessels can prevent the growth and spread of tumors.
Individuals who were exposed to asbestos and have developed symptoms of mesothelioma, lung cancer, asbestosis or another asbestos-related disease should seek a professional medical opinion. The Mesothelioma Research Foundation of America (a not-for-profit research organization) provides free access to our mesothelioma research team for answers to your medical questions. Simply Ask Dr