Treatment for Mesothelioma: Immunotherapy
Treatment regimens involving mesothelioma immunotherapy have produced variable results.
For example, intrapleural inoculation of Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) in an
attempt to boost the immune response, was found to be of no benefit to the
patient (while it may benefit patients with bladder cancer).
Mesothelioma cells proved susceptible to in vitro lysis by LAK cells following activation by interleukin-2 (IL-2), but patients undergoing this particular therapy experienced major side effects.
Indeed, this trial was suspended in view
of the unacceptably high levels of IL-2 toxicity and the severity of side
effects such as fever and cachexia.
Nonetheless, other trials involving interferon alpha have proved more encouraging with 20% of patients experiencing a greater than 50% reduction in tumor mass combined with minimal side effects.
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