About | BLOGS | Portfolio | Misc | Recommended | What's New | What's Hot

About | BLOGS | Portfolio | Misc | Recommended | What's New | What's Hot


Bibliography Options Menu

30 Nov 2020 at 01:46
Hide Abstracts   |   Hide Additional Links
Long bibliographies are displayed in blocks of 100 citations at a time. At the end of each block there is an option to load the next block.

Bibliography on: Mesothelioma and Asbestos


Robert J. Robbins is a biologist, an educator, a science administrator, a publisher, an information technologist, and an IT leader and manager who specializes in advancing biomedical knowledge and supporting education through the application of information technology. More About:  RJR | OUR TEAM | OUR SERVICES | THIS WEBSITE

RJR: Recommended Bibliography 30 Nov 2020 at 01:46 Created: 

Mesothelioma and Asbestos

Mesothelioma is a rare, but deadly form of cancer that is often (nearly always) associated with prior exposure to asbestos. The latency between exposure and disease onset is long, usually 20-50 years, making this a difficult cause-effect system to study.

Created with PubMed® Query: asbestos AND mesothelioma NOT pmcbook NOT ispreviousversion

Citations The Papers (from PubMed®)


RevDate: 2020-11-26

Arulananda S, Lee EF, Fairlie WD, et al (2020)

The role of BCL-2 family proteins and therapeutic potential of BH3-mimetics in malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Expert review of anticancer therapy [Epub ahead of print].

INTRODUCTION: With limited therapeutic changes in over a decade, a diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is associated with poor survival and death within 12 months, making it one of the most lethal malignancies worldwide. Due to unregulated asbestos use in developing countries and through exposure associated with home renovations rather than industrial exposure, as was the case in the past, new cases of MPM are likely to present for decades to come. As MPM is largely driven by dysregulation of tumour suppressor genes, researchers have looked to other mechanisms of subverting tumour proliferation and spread. Over-expression of pro-survival BCL-2 family proteins impairs a cell's ability to undergo programmed cell death and BH3-mimetics which target these proteins, are a novel treatment option across haematological and some solid cancers, though have yet to be widely investigated in MPM.

AREAS COVERED: This review provides a succinct overview of MPM and its current treatment landscape. It summarises the role that BCL-2 family proteins play in tumorigenesis and the current therapeutic potential of BH3-mimetics across multiple cancer types. Finally, it discusses the role that BCL-2 family proteins play in MPM and the pre-clinical rationale for investigating BH3-mimetics as a therapeutic strategy.

EXPERT OPINION: As a disease which lacks readily actionable oncogene driver mutations and displays only a modest benefit from immune checkpoint inhibition, novel therapeutic options are urgently needed for MPM. Hence, BH3-mimetics could be a promising treatment option for some solid cancers and potentially for MPM, where there is evidence supporting dependence on pro-survival BCL-2 proteins for MPM tumour cell survival.

RevDate: 2020-11-25

Cugliari G, Catalano C, Guarrera S, et al (2020)

DNA Methylation of FKBP5 as Predictor of Overall Survival in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

Cancers, 12(11): pii:cancers12113470.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive tumor with median survival of 12 months and limited effective treatments. The scope of this study was to study the relationship between blood DNA methylation (DNAm) and overall survival (OS) aiming at a noninvasive prognostic test. We investigated a cohort of 159 incident asbestos exposed MPM cases enrolled in an Italian area with high incidence of mesothelioma. Considering 12 months as a cut-off for OS, epigenome-wide association study (EWAS) revealed statistically significant (p value = 7.7 × 10-9) OS-related differential methylation of a single-CpG (cg03546163), located in the 5'UTR region of the FKBP5 gene. This is an independent marker of prognosis in MPM patients with a better performance than traditional inflammation-based scores such as lymphocyte-to-monocyte ratio (LMR). Cases with DNAm < 0.45 at the cg03546163 had significantly poor survival compared with those showing DNAm ≥ 0.45 (mean: 243 versus 534 days; p value< 0.001). Epigenetic changes at the FKBP5 gene were robustly associated with OS in MPM cases. Our results showed that blood DNA methylation levels could be promising and dynamic prognostic biomarkers in MPM.

RevDate: 2020-11-24

Jiang Z, Shen W, Ying S, et al (2020)

Overexpression of fibulin-3 in tumor tissue predicts poor survival of malignant mesothelioma patients from hand-spinning asbestos exposed area in eastern China.

Scientific reports, 10(1):20373 pii:10.1038/s41598-020-77412-4.

Fibulin-3 is an extracellular matrix glycoprotein widely expressed in various tissues. Tissue fibulin-3 expression have never been reported in association with prognosis of mesothelioma. Hence, we sought to determine the association between fibulin-3 expression and mesothelioma survival. We made a tissue microarray, which was comprised of cancer and normal tissue from mesothelioma patients (n = 82) during the period 1998-2017 in China. Fibulin-3 and HGMB1 expression were analyzed by immunohistochemistry method. Kaplan-Meier method and Cox proportional hazard models were used for analyzing survival data. Overall, 61 cases (74.4%) were female; 90.2% were of epithelioid type; the median overall survival time was 12.5 months. Fibulin-3 and HMGB1 were highly expressed in tumor tissue rather than adjacent tissue. The expression of fibulin-3 in tissue was correlated with that of HMGB1 (r = 0.32, P = 0.003). High expression of fibulin-3 in tumor tissue could predict poor survival in patients with mesothelioma (P = 0.02). This remained true in a multivariate model, with a significant hazard ratio of 1.91. We demonstrated that fibulin-3 in tumor tissue was a novel biomarker of poor survival of mesothelioma, suggesting it may be a relevant target for therapeutic intervention.

RevDate: 2020-11-16

Xia H, Feng L, Lin L, et al (2020)

Exploration of identifying novel serum biomarkers for malignant mesothelioma using iTRAQ combined with 2D-LC-MS/MS.

Environmental research pii:S0013-9351(20)31364-5 [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive cancer linked to asbestos exposure. Its poor prognosis makes early diagnosis extremely important, which would provide an opportunity for early treatment and potentially changing outcomes. This study aimed to explore the underlying mechanisms of MM and discover novel noninvasive biomarkers for the diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma. Using Isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation (iTRAQ) combined with two-dimensional liquid chromatography/tandem mass spectrometry (2D LC-MS/MS), a total of 145 differentially expressed serum proteins were identified between MM patients and healthy controls. The identified proteins were further analyzed by bioinformatics, out of which three candidate biomarkers (Filamin A (FLNA), Fibulin 1 (FBLN1) and Thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1)) were validated in large cohorts of patients with asbestos-related diseases including MM patients by ELISA assay. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis showed that serum FLNA, FBLN1 and TSP-1 had high diagnostic values in distinguishing MM patients from healthy controls, individuals with asbestos exposure (AE), and patients with pleural plaques (PP) or asbestosis. Meanwhile, serum FBLN1 and TSP-1 possessed good diagnostic values in distinguishing asbestosis patients from healthy controls and individuals with AE. The combination of FLNA, FBLN1, and TSP-1 proteins had higher sensitivity and specificity in discriminating patients with MM, PP and asbestosis. Our findings indicated that analysis of serum proteome using iTRAQ is a feasible strategy for biomarker discovery, and serum FLNA, FBLN1 and TSP-1 may be promising candidates for diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma and screening of at-risk individuals.

RevDate: 2020-11-11
CmpDate: 2020-11-11

Kwak K, Paek D, KE Zoh (2020)

Author's response to 'Re: Exposure to asbestos and the risk of colorectal cancer mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis by Kwak et al'.

Occupational and environmental medicine, 77(9):656-657.

RevDate: 2020-11-11
CmpDate: 2020-11-11

Boffetta P (2020)

Re: Exposure to asbestos and the risk of colorectal cancer mortality: a systematic review and meta-analysis by Kwak et al.

Occupational and environmental medicine, 77(9):655.

RevDate: 2020-11-09
CmpDate: 2020-11-09

Rosner D, G Markowitz (2020)

Baby Powders and the Precautionary Principle.

American journal of public health, 110(9):1378-1379.

RevDate: 2020-11-09
CmpDate: 2020-11-09

Loreto C, Caltabiano R, Graziano ACE, et al (2020)

Defense and protection mechanisms in lung exposed to asbestiform fiber: the role of macrophage migration inhibitory factor and heme oxygenase-1.

European journal of histochemistry : EJH, 64(2):.

Fluoro-edenite (FE), an asbestiform fiber, is responsible for many respiratory pathologies: chronic obstructive diseases, pleural plaques, fibrosis, and malignant mesothelioma. Macrophage migration inhibitory factor (MIF) is one of the first cytokines produced in response to lung tissue damage. Heme oxygenase-1 (HO-1) is a protein with protective effects against oxidative stress. It is up regulated by several stimuli including pro-inflammatory cytokines and factors that promote oxidative stress. In this research, the in vivo model of sheep lungs naturally exposed to FE was studied in order to shed light on the pathophysiological events sustaining exposure to fibers, by determining immunohistochemical lung expression of MIF and HO-1. Protein levels expression of HO-1 and MIF were also evaluated in human primary lung fibroblasts after exposure to FE fibers in vitro. In exposed sheep lungs, MIF and HO-1 immunoexpression were spread involving the intraparenchymal stroma around bronchioles, interstitium between alveoli, alveolar epithelium and macrophages. High MIF immunoexpression prevails in macrophages. Similar results were obtained in vitro, but significantly higher values were only detected for HO-1 at concentrations of 50 and 100 μg/mL of FE fibers. MIF and HO-1 expressions seem to play a role in lung self-protection against uncontrolled chronic inflammation, thus counteracting the strong link with cancer development, induced by exposure to FE. Further studies will be conducted in order to add more information about the role of MIF and HO-1 in the toxicity FE-induced.

RevDate: 2020-11-05

Filetti V, Vitale E, Broggi G, et al (2020)

Update of in vitro, in vivo and ex vivo fluoro-edenite effects on malignant mesothelioma: A systematic review (Review).

Biomedical reports, 13(6):60.

Fluoro-edenite (FE), asbestiform fiber found in Biancavilla (Sicily, Italy), presents various characteristics similar to the asbestos group, in particular two fibrous phases tremolite and actinolite. Indeed, epidemiological studies have shown that FE fibers have similar effects to those of asbestos fibers. Such studies have reported a high incidence of malignant mesothelioma (MM), an aggressive neoplasm of the serosal membranes lining the pleural cavity, in individuals residing there due to FE exposure in Biancavilla related to environmental contamination. Evidence has led to the classification of FE as a Group 1 human carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). The aim of this systematic review is to compare the results achieved in in vitro, in vivo and ex vivo experimental studies involving FE in order to update the current knowledge on the pathogenesis and molecular mechanisms responsible for FE-mediated MM development as well as the availability of effective biomarkers for MM prevention and diagnosis. This review is focused on the pathophysiological mechanisms mediated by inflammation induced by FE fiber exposure and which are responsible for MM development. This review also discusses the discovery of new diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers for the management of this pathology. It is known that the risk of cancer development increases with chronic inflammation, arising from enhanced reactive oxygen species (ROS) and NO• production stimulated by the body to remove exogenous agents, causing DNA damage and enhanced signal transduction that may lead to activation of oncogenes. Studies concerning MM biomarker discovery indicate that several biomarkers have been proposed for MM, but mesothelin is the only Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved biomarker for MM, with limitations. In recent studies, in silico analysis to identify selected miRNAs highly deregulated in cancer samples when compared with normal control have been developed. This in silico approach could represent an effort in the field of biomarker discovery for MM.

RevDate: 2020-11-05

Notue YA, Mbessoh UI, Nganwa G, et al (2020)

Sarcomatoid malignant peritoneal mesothelioma presenting as a localized mesenteric tumor with no previous asbestos exposure.

Journal of surgical case reports, 2020(10):rjaa419 pii:rjaa419.

Sarcomatoid malignant peritoneal mesothelioma is the rarest and most lethal form of peritoneal mesothelioma. We present the case of a sarcomatoid malignant peritoneal mesothelioma presenting as a localized mesenteric tumor in a 54-year-old female with no previous asbestos exposure. This clinical presentation is extremely rare and is the first documented in Cameroon.

RevDate: 2020-11-05

Khaliullin TO, Kisin ER, Guppi S, et al (2020)

Differential responses of murine alveolar macrophages to elongate mineral particles of asbestiform and non-asbestiform varieties: Cytotoxicity, cytokine secretion and transcriptional changes.

Toxicology and applied pharmacology, 409:115302 pii:S0041-008X(20)30428-2 [Epub ahead of print].

Human exposures to asbestiform elongate mineral particles (EMP) may lead to diffuse fibrosis, lung cancer, malignant mesothelioma and autoimmune diseases. Cleavage fragments (CF) are chemically identical to asbestiform varieties (or habits) of the parent mineral, but no consensus exists on whether to treat them as asbestos from toxicological and regulatory standpoints. Alveolar macrophages (AM) are the first responders to inhaled particulates, participating in clearance and activating other resident and recruited immunocompetent cells, impacting the long-term outcomes. In this study we address how EMP of asbestiform versus non-asbestiform habit affect AM responses. Max Planck Institute (MPI) cells, a non-transformed mouse line that has an AM phenotype and genotype, were treated with mass-, surface area- (s.a.), and particle number- (p.n.) equivalent concentrations of respirable asbestiform and non-asbestiform riebeckite/tremolite EMP for 24 h. Cytotoxicity, cytokines secretion and transcriptional changes were evaluated. At the equal mass, asbestiform EMP were more cytotoxic, however EMP of both habits induced similar LDH leakage and decrease in viability at s.a. and p.n. equivalent doses. DNA damage assessment and cell cycle analysis revealed differences in the modes of cell death between asbestos and respective CF. There was an increase in chemokines, but not pro-inflammatory cytokines after all EMP treatments. Principal component analysis of the cytokine secretion showed close clustering for the s.a. and p.n. equivalent treatments. There were mineral- and habit-specific patterns of gene expression dysregulation at s.a. equivalent doses. Our study reveals the critical nature of EMP morphometric parameters for exposure assessment and dosing approaches used in toxicity studies.

RevDate: 2020-11-04

Liu Y, Tong J, Ling X, et al (2020)

A Case of Systemic Lupus Erythematosus with Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma in a 42-year Woman.

Journal of the College of Physicians and Surgeons--Pakistan : JCPSP, 30(10):1099-1101.

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is an autoimmune connective tissue disease characterised by inflammation. Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a highly invasive malignant tumor derived from pleural mesothelial cells. Here, we report a case of SLE with MPM. A 42-year woman with no exposure to asbestos presented with severe left chest pain. Initially, we diagnosed her with SLE because of the clinical manifestations and high antinuclear antibody titer. Finally, a diagnosis of MPM was made, based on pleural biopsy. Her condition was under control after one cycle of chemotherapy and oral methotrexate. However, three years later, she was admitted with dyspnea, mild orthopnea, and tachycardia, and died one month later after discontinuing treatment. MPM is rare, and MPM with SLE is even rarer. We should pay attention to pleural effusion when diagnosing SLE. If possible, a pleural biopsy should be performed to reduce misdiagnosis and missed diagnosis. Key Words: Pleural effusion, Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), Mesothelioma.

RevDate: 2020-11-02

MacMillan M, Roy B, McLaren S, et al (2020)

Widespread pulmonary invasion by malignant pleural mesothelioma: an important diagnostic consideration.

Respirology case reports, 8(9):e00675 pii:RCR2675.

We report a rare case of early and extensive pulmonary invasion of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) in a 70-year-old woman. She first presented with a hydropneumothorax and subsequent workup, including video-assisted thoracoscopy (VAT), confirmed MPM. After VAT, she developed dyspnoea, cough, and widespread pulmonary infiltrates of uncertain aetiology. These infiltrates progressed over the following months, failed to respond to antibiotics, and were strongly fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG)-avid on positron emission tomography (PET). Bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) yielded extremely viscous fluid containing mesothelioma cells. These cells were also found in the sputum when nebulized deoxyribonuclease (DNase) was trialled to enhance clearance of the pulmonary fluid. The patient deteriorated rapidly with progressive mediastinal and contralateral MPM involvement and died one month later. This case highlights the importance of including tumour invasion as a differential diagnosis of non-resolving pulmonary infiltrates in patients with MPM.

RevDate: 2020-11-02

Gesmundo I, Silvagno F, Banfi D, et al (2020)

Calcitriol Inhibits Viability and Proliferation in Human Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Cells.

Frontiers in endocrinology, 11:559586.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare and aggressive tumor, often associated with exposure to asbestos and characterized by poor prognosis and limited treatment options. The biologically active form of vitamin D, calcitriol, exerts anticancer effects in many cell types, both alone and in combination with chemotherapy drugs, through binding to vitamin D receptor (VDR); however, the role of calcitriol in MPM is still unknown. This study aimed to determine the potential antitumor role of calcitriol in MPM. The results showed that calcitriol reduces cell viability and proliferation in human MPM cells lines, which express both cytoplasmic and nuclear VDR; furthermore, calcitriol potentiated the inhibitory activity of the chemotherapy drug PEM. These effects were paralleled by cell cycle arrest and inhibition in expression of c-Myc and cyclins involved in cell cycle progression. Exposure of MPM cells to calcitriol also produced an alteration in mitochondrial function and inhibition in the expression of respiratory chain complex subunits. Finally, the inhibitory effects of calcitriol were also observed on viability of human primary MPM cells. Collectively, these results indicate a novel anticancer role for calcitriol in MPM, suggesting potential for vitamin D derivatives, alone or in combination with chemotherapy, in the treatment of this malignancy.

RevDate: 2020-10-29

Barbieri PG, Mirabelli D, Madeo E, et al (2020)

[Asbestos exposure and related diseases among friction products workers (1971-2016)].

Giornale italiano di medicina del lavoro ed ergonomia, 42(3):145-152.

SUMMARY: Worldwide studies have been published on the mortality of workers employed in asbestos-based materials for the production of clutches and brakes. However no one of these studies is related to Italian cases. Furthermore, not even surveys have been conducted in Italy to characterize the correlation between asbestos exposures and the possible occurring of asbestos-related disease. Our objectives are the following: i) to assess and quantify the asbestos exposure cases, ii) to describe the nature and the frequency of asbestos-related diseases among blue collar employees of an important factory producing brakes and clutches with chrysotile asbestos content from 1971 to 1993 and iii) to provide preliminary data on cumulative asbestos exposure estimated using lung fibre burden analysis. Critical appraisal of airborne asbestos fibre measurements and identification of cases of asbestos-related diseases between the blue collar employees, either notified to the local health authority or recovered from the Italian national Mesothelioma registry was investigated. Lung fibre burden analysis using the lung tissue samples from two deceased blue collar employees was also performed. Airborne asbestos fibre measurements (carried out in 1982) suggested asbestos fibres average concentrations of about 0.3 f/ml, while all 1992 measurements showed results below 0.1 f/ml. Furthermore, since 1988, we identified four cases of pleural plaques, three cases of asbestosis and seven cases of lung cancer. No case of malignant mesothelioma was found. In both lung cancer cases, analysed to measure the lung fibre burden, commercial amphiboles were absent or in limited concentration but chrysotile and, especially, tremolite asbestos were present in noticeable amount. In conclusion, since 1971 and up to early 1980s, exposure to chrysotile asbestos and talc, likely contaminated by tremolite, had been significant and comparable to levels causing asbestosis long-term risk. No case of malignant mesothelioma was found, that is consistent with the absence of amphiboles and with the lower risk of mesothelioma associated with the chrysotile asbestos. However a subset of the blue collar employees, the ones employed later on, could still have not reached the full risk condition, and so being still at risk of developing malignant mesothelioma. In the two lung cancer cases studied, the lung fibre burden was essentially made of chrysotile and tremolite. Lastly, lung cancer occurrence in the population of blue collar employees has been likely underestimated and the correct determination of lung cancer risk should be done through the mortality analysis of this population.

RevDate: 2020-10-23

Brandi G, Deserti M, Palloni A, et al (2020)

Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma development in a patient with a novel BAP1 germline mutation and low exposure to asbestos.

BRCA1 associated protein-1 (BAP1) germline mutations define a novel hereditary cancer syndrome, namely BAP1 tumor predisposition syndrome (BAP1-TPDS), characterized by an increased susceptibility to develop different cancer types, including mesothelioma, uveal and cutaneous melanoma, renal cell carcinoma, and basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma. Currently, the role of BAP1 germline mutations in intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (iCCA) pathogenesis is less known. Here we report the first clinical case of a female patient who developed an iCCA when she was 47-years-old and was found to carry a novel germline mutation at a splicing site of exon 4 in BAP1 gene (NM_004656.4: c.255_255+6del). An accurate anamnesis revealed the absence of risk factors linked to iCCA development, except for a low occupational exposure to asbestos. In tumor tissue, BAP1 sequencing, multiplex ligation-dependent probe amplification and immunoistochemistry showed the loss of heterozygosity and lack of nuclear expression, suggesting that BAP1 wild-type allele and functional protein were lost in cancer cells, in line with the classical two-hit model of tumor suppressor genes. Further studies are needed to confirm whether iCCA may be included into BAP1-TPDS cancer phenotypes and whether minimal asbestos exposure may facilitate the development of this malignancy in individuals carrying BAP1 germline mutations.

RevDate: 2020-10-22

Wong JYY, Rice C, Blair A, et al (2020)

Mesothelioma risk among those exposed to chrysotile asbestos only and mixtures that include amphibole: a case-control study in the USA, 1975-1980.

Occupational and environmental medicine pii:oemed-2020-106665 [Epub ahead of print].

OBJECTIVES: Occupational asbestos exposure is causally linked to mesothelioma. However, whether exposure to only chrysotile asbestos is associated with mesothelioma risk, and the heterogeneity in risk by different fibre types/lengths remains unclear. We investigated whether mesothelioma risk differs among workers exposed to only chrysotile asbestos compared with chrysotile and ≥1 amphibole (ie, amosite, tremolite, anthophyllite and crocidolite) over the working lifetime.

METHODS: We analysed next-of-kin interview data including occupational histories for 580 white men (176 cases and 404 controls) from a case-control study of mesothelioma conducted in the USA in 1975-1980. Asbestos exposure was determined by an occupational hygienist using a job-exposure matrix and exposure categories included chrysotile only and nine chrysotile-amphibole mixtures. Logistic regression models were used to estimate the ORs and 95% CIs of mesothelioma, comparing each asbestos category to the unexposed group, adjusted for age at death and data source. Analysis of contrasts was used to assess overall heterogeneity and pair-wise differences in risk.

RESULTS: Exposure to long and short chrysotile only was associated with increased mesothelioma risk compared with the unexposed (OR=3.8 (95% CI 1.3 to 11.2)). The complex mixture of extra-long amosite, short and long chrysotile, tremolite and anthophyllite was associated with the highest risk (OR=12.8 (95% CI 4.1 to 40.2)). There was evidence for overall heterogeneity among the asbestos exposure categories (p heterogeneity=0.02). However, the lower risk observed for exposure to chrysotile only compared with the complex mixture was not significant (p difference=0.10).

CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that policies aimed at regulating asbestos should target both pure chrysotile and mixtures that include amphibole.

RevDate: 2020-10-21

Piber P, Vavpetic N, Goricar K, et al (2020)

The influence of genetic variability in IL1B and MIR146A on the risk of pleural plaques and malignant mesothelioma.

Radiology and oncology, 54(4):429-436 pii:/j/raon.2020.54.issue-4/raon-2020-0057/raon-2020-0057.xml.

Background Asbestos exposure is associated with the development of pleural plaques as well as malignant mesothelioma (MM). Asbestos fibres activate macrophages, leading to the release of inflammatory mediators including interleukin 1 beta (IL-1β). The expression of IL-1β may be influenced by genetic variability of IL1B gene or regulatory microRNAs (miRNAs). This study investigated the effect of polymorphisms in IL1B and MIR146A genes on the risk of developing pleural plaques and MM. Subjects and methods In total, 394 patients with pleural plaques, 277 patients with MM, and 175 healthy control subjects were genotyped for IL1B and MIR146A polymorphisms. Logistic regression was used in statistical analysis. Results We found no association between MIR146A and IL1B genotypes, and the risk of pleural plaques. MIR146A rs2910164 was significantly associated with a decreased risk of MM (OR = 0.31, 95% CI = 0.13-0.73, p = 0.008). Carriers of two polymorphic alleles had a lower risk of developing MM, even after adjustment for gender and age (OR = 0.34, 95% CI = 0.14-0.85, p = 0.020). Among patients with known asbestos exposure, carriers of at least one polymorphic IL1B rs1143623 allele also had a lower risk of MM in multivariable analysis (OR = 0.50, 95% CI = 0.28-0.92, p = 0.025). The interaction between IL1B rs1143623 and IL1B rs1071676 was significantly associated with an increased risk of MM (p = 0.050). Conclusions Our findings suggest that genetic variability of inflammatory mediator IL-1β could contribute to the risk of developing MM, but not pleural plaques.

RevDate: 2020-10-20
CmpDate: 2020-10-20

Ferrante D, Mirabelli D, Silvestri S, et al (2020)

Ferrante et al respond.

American journal of industrial medicine, 63(9):836-837.

RevDate: 2020-10-18

Janošíková M, Nakládalová M, Štěpánek L, et al (2020)

Occurrence of asbestos-related occupational diseases in the Czech Republic in the last 20 years.

Central European journal of public health, 28(Supplement):S37-S42.

OBJECTIVES: Asbestos-related diseases are still a current problem worldwide. What is their occurrence in the Czech Republic? The answer is the subject of this study, which aims to provide a general and regional overview of the situation over the last 20 years with a more detailed focus on mesothelioma, the development of which is highly associated with asbestos exposure and the issue of their recognition as an occupational disease.

METHODS: In its retrospective reviews, the study is based on analyses of data from the Institute of Health Information and Statistics of the Czech Republic and data from the Czech National Cancer Registry, which also interconnects.

RESULTS: In the last 20 years, 512 new cases of occupational diseases from asbestos have been reported, namely 228 cases of pleural thickening, 133 mesotheliomas, 92 asbestoses, and 59 cases of lung cancer. In the last 5 years, mesotheliomas (n = 39) predominated among the reported diseases with a 45% proportion in the total number of 86 cases. The trend in their incidence, as the only one among asbestos-related diseases, is not declining. There was a significant difference in the overall incidence of mesothelioma in a general population and the incidence of occupational mesotheliomas. At the national level, occupational aetiology was acknowledged in only 11.3% of cases of mesothelioma on average. The highest proportion of occupational mesotheliomas and the highest incidence of all asbestos-related diseases were found in regions where the largest asbestos processing plants were located.

CONCLUSION: The authors emphasize the importance of work history for the diagnostic process of asbestos-related diseases and also the need to perform follow-up examinations for their early detection.

RevDate: 2020-10-19

Fusco N, Vaira V, Righi I, et al (2020)

Characterization of the immune microenvironment in malignant pleural mesothelioma reveals prognostic subgroups of patients.

Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 150:53-61 pii:S0169-5002(20)30636-X [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare tumor with an extremely poor prognosis. Its pathogenesis is related to an immune response against asbestos fibers. The T-lymphocytes, including CD8POS and CD4POS cells, are an important part of the MPM immune microenvironment, and likely contribute to the therapy resistance observed in these tumors. Here, we sought to characterize the MPM-specific lymphocytes subpopulations within the tumor immune microenvironment to identify novel clinically relevant immunologic subtypes of tumors. Representative formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue blocks of 88 MPMs were included in tissue microarrays and subjected to tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) quantification and subtyping by immunohistochemistry (IHC) with antibodies specific for CD4, CD8, and CD19. Further, PD-L1 (clone 22C3) expression was assessed by IHC as a combined positive score (CPS). Our data show that PD-L1 expression by tumor cells or the presence of a sarcomatoid component is related to increased stromal TILs presence in MPM. Survival analyses showed that low CD4POS and high CD8POS stromal TILs are associated with poor patients' survival. In MPMs with PD-L1 CPS > 1, stromal CD8HIGH was a poor prognostic factor, akin stromal CD4POS peritumoral TILs correlated with a worse prognosis. Furthermore, we demonstrated that a high CD4POS/CD8POS ratio in the tumor immune microenvironment is an independent prognostic factor for survival. Finally, we provided evidence that the characterization of the stromal immune landscape of MPM predicts responses to chemotherapy in subgroups of MPM. The results of this study provide novel insights into the clinical scenario of immune-related biomarkers in MPM.

RevDate: 2020-10-15

Sekine I, Yamamoto Y, Suzuki T, et al (2020)

Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma in Patients Who Previously Received Radiotherapy for their First Malignant Tumor.

Internal medicine (Tokyo, Japan) [Epub ahead of print].

RevDate: 2020-10-15

Nakashima K, Demura Y, Oi M, et al (2020)

The Association between Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma and Thoracic Radiation Therapy for Hodgkin's Lymphoma: The First Case Report in Japan.

Internal medicine (Tokyo, Japan) [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is mostly observed in patients with a history of asbestos exposure. Although other causes are rare, there are several reports of MPM induced by therapeutic radiation, mainly in Europe and North America. However, no such case has been reported in Japan. We herein report a 50-year-old Japanese woman who developed MPM 25 years after thoracic radiation therapy for Hodgkin's lymphoma. The patient had no history of exposure to asbestos; therefore, her history of radiation therapy was considered to be the cause of MPM. Clinicians should consider secondary MPM in patients with a history of thoracic radiation therapy.

RevDate: 2020-10-15

Saleh DM, Alexander WT, Numano T, et al (2020)

Comparative carcinogenicity study of a thick, straight-type and a thin, tangled-type multi-walled carbon nanotube administered by intra-tracheal instillation in the rat.

Particle and fibre toxicology, 17(1):48 pii:10.1186/s12989-020-00382-y.

BACKGROUND: Multi-walled carbon nanotubes can be divided into two general subtypes: tangled and straight. MWCNT-N (60 nm in diameter) and MWCNT-7 (80-90 nm in diameter) are straight-type MWCNTs, and similarly to asbestos, both are carcinogenic to the lung and pleura when administered to rats via the airway. Injection of straight-type MWCNTs into the peritoneal cavity also induces the development of mesothelioma, however, injection of tangled-type MWCNTs into the peritoneal cavity does not induce carcinogenesis. To investigate these effects in the lung we conducted a 2-year comparative study of the potential carcinogenicities of a straight-type MWCNT, MWCNT-A (approximately 150 nm in diameter), and a tangled-type MWCNT, MWCNT-B (7.4 nm in diameter) after administration into the rat lung. Crocidolite asbestos was used as the reference material, and rats administered vehicle were used as the controls. Test materials were administered by intra-Tracheal Intra-Pulmonary Spraying (TIPS) once a week over a 7 week period (8 administrations from day 1 to day 50), followed by a 2-year observation period without further treatment. Rats were administered total doses of 0.5 or 1.0 mg MWCNT-A and MWCNT-B or 1.0 mg asbestos.

RESULTS: There was no difference in survival between any of the groups. The rats administered MWCNT-A or asbestos did not have a significant increase in bronchiolo-alveolar hyperplasia or tumors in the lung. However, the rats administered MWCNT-B did have significantly elevated incidences of bronchiolo-alveolar hyperplasia and tumors in the lung: the incidence of bronchiolo-alveolar hyperplasia was 0/20, 6/20, and 9/20 in the vehicle, 0.5 mg MWCNT-B, and 1.0 mg MWCNT-B groups, respectively, and the incidence of adenoma and adenocarcinoma combined was 1/19, 5/20, and 7/20 in the vehicle, 0.5 mg MWCNT-B, and 1.0 mg MWCNT-B groups, respectively. Malignant pleural mesothelioma was not induced in any of the groups.

CONCLUSIONS: The results of this initial study indicate that tangled-type MWCNT-B is carcinogenic to the rat lung when administered via the airway, and that straight-type MWCNT-A did not have higher carcinogenic potential in the rat lung than tangled-type MWCNT-B.

RevDate: 2020-10-14

Hariharan A, Sun S, Wipplinger M, et al (2020)

RNA editing in mesothelioma: a look forward.

Open biology, 10(10):200112.

RNA editing is a post-transcriptional process increasing transcript diversity, thereby regulating different biological processes. We recently observed that mutations resulting from RNA editing due to hydrolytic deamination of adenosine increase during the development of mesothelioma, a rare cancer linked to chronic exposure to asbestos. This review gathers information from the published literature and public data mining to explore several aspects of RNA editing and their possible implications for cancer growth and therapy. We address possible links between RNA editing and particular types of mesothelioma genetic and epigenetic alterations and discuss the relevance of an edited substrate in the context of current chemotherapy or immunotherapy.

RevDate: 2020-10-13

Orbach D, André N, Brecht IB, et al (2020)

Mesothelioma in children and adolescents: the European Cooperative Study Group for Pediatric Rare Rumors (EXPeRT) contribution.

European journal of cancer (Oxford, England : 1990), 140:63-70 pii:S0959-8049(20)30494-9 [Epub ahead of print].

INTRODUCTION: Very little is known about the characteristics of mesothelial tumours in the paediatric population. In adults with malignant mesothelioma, the pemetrexed-based regimen with cytoreductive surgery (CRS) is a standard of care in limited tumours, but long-term survival is uncommon.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: The European Cooperative Study Group on Pediatric Rare Tumors (EXPeRT) retrospectively reviewed children, adolescents and young adults (≤21 year) diagnosed with mesothelial tumours treated between 1987 and 2018.

RESULTS: Thirty-three patients were identified, 15 male and 18 female patients. One patient's exposure to asbestos was documented. Primary tumour was mainly in the peritoneum (23 patients). Histology was multicystic mesothelioma of the peritoneum (MCM) (six patients) or malignant mesothelioma (MM) (27 patients). Among MM, the first-line treatment comprised preoperative chemotherapy (14 cases), surgery only (three cases), chemotherapy only (five cases), adjuvant chemotherapy (three cases) or palliative treatment (two cases). The response rate to cisplatin-pemetrexed was 50% (6/12 cases). CRS with hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (CRS-HIPEC) was performed in 19 patients (upfront in three, after neoadjuvant therapy in 12, or after tumour progression in six patients, including three twice). After a median follow-up of 6.7 years (range, 0-20), five-year overall and event-free survivals were 82.3% (95% CI, confidential interval ((CI), 67.8-99.9) and 45.1% (95% CI, 28.4-71.7), respectively. All patients with MCM are alive after surgery (five patients) and CRS-HIPEC (one patient).

CONCLUSIONS: Paediatric mesothelioma is exceptional and seems to be different from its adult counterpart with few asbestos exposures, more peritoneal primary, and a better outcome. The cisplatin-pemetrexed regimen showed promising efficacy. Relapses could be salvaged with active therapy including CRS-HIPEC.

RevDate: 2020-10-12

Duong BTV, Wu L, Green BJ, et al (2020)

A liquid biopsy for detecting circulating mesothelial precursor cells: A new biomarker for diagnosis and prognosis in mesothelioma.

EBioMedicine, 61:103031 pii:S2352-3964(20)30407-2 [Epub ahead of print].

BACKGROUND: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive cancer related to asbestos exposure. Early diagnosis is challenging due to generic symptoms and a lack of biomarkers. We previously demonstrated that mesothelial precursor cells (MPC) characterized by mesothelin (MSLN)+CD90+CD34+ could be implicated in the development of mesothelioma after asbestos exposure. Here, we aimed to determine the clinical significance of detecting MPC in blood for early-stage diagnosis and prognosis of mesothelioma.

METHODS: Due to the rarity of MPC in blood, it is challenging to identify this cell population using conventional techniques. Hence, we have developed a microfluidic liquid biopsy platform called MesoFind that utilizes an immunomagnetic, mesothelin capture strategy coupled with immunofluorescence to identify rare populations of cells at high sensitivity and precision. To validate our technique, we compared this approach to flow cytometry for the detection of MPC in murine blood and lavage samples. Upon successful validation of the murine samples, we then proceeded to examine circulating MPC in 23 patients with MPM, 23 asbestos-exposed individuals (ASB), and 10 healthy donors (HD) to evaluate their prognostic and diagnostic value.

FINDING: MPC were successfully detected in the blood of murine samples using MesoFind but were undetectable with flow cytometry. Circulating MPC were significantly higher in patients with epithelioid MPM compared to HD and ASB. The MPC subpopulation, MSLN+ and CD90+, were upregulated in ASB compared to HD suggesting an early role in pleural damage from asbestos. The MPC subpopulation, MSLN+ and CD34+, in contrast, were detected in advanced MPM and associated with markers of poor prognosis, suggesting a predominant role during cancer progression.

INTERPRETATION: The identification of circulating MPC presents an attractive solution for screening and early diagnosis of epithelioid mesothelioma. The presence of different subtypes of MPC have a prognostic value that could be of assistance with clinical decisions in patients with MPM.

FUNDING: Princess Margaret Hospital Foundation Mesothelioma Research Fund, Toronto General & Western Hospital Foundation.

RevDate: 2020-10-11

Korchevskiy A (2020)

Using benchmark dose modeling for the quantitative risk assessment: Carbon nanotubes, asbestos, glyphosate.

Journal of applied toxicology : JAT [Epub ahead of print].

Benchmark dose method is one of the most famous quantitative approaches available for toxicological risks prediction. However, it is not fully clear how occupational health professionals can use it for specific workplace scenarios requiring carcinogen risk assessment. The paper explores the hypothesis that benchmark dose method allows to effectively approximate dose-response data on carcinogenic response, providing reasonable estimations of risks in the situations when a choice between more complex models is not warranted for practical purposes. Three case studies were analyzed for the agents with different levels of scientific confidence in human carcinogenicity: carbon nanotubes, amosite asbestos, and glyphosate. For each agent, a critical study was determined, and a dose-response slope factor was quantified, based on the weighted average lower bound benchmark dose. The linear slope factors of 0.111 lifetime excess cases of lung carcinoma per mg/m3 of MWCNT-7 (in rats exposure equivalent), 0.009 cases of mesothelioma per f/cc-years of cumulative exposure to amosite asbestos, and 0.000094 cases of malignant lymphoma per mg/kg/day of glyphosate (in mice equivalent) were determined. The correlations between the proposed linear predictive models and observed data points were R = 0.96 (R2 = 0.92) for carbon nanotubes, R = 0.97 (R2 = 0.95) for amosite asbestos, and R = 0.89 (R2 = 0.79) for glyphosate. In all three cases, the linear extrapolation yielded comparable level of risk estimations with the "best fit" nonlinear model; for nanoparticles and amosite asbestos, linear estimations were more conservative. By performing a simulation study, it was demonstrated that a weighted average benchmark dose expressed the highest correlation with multistage and quantal-linear models.

RevDate: 2020-10-10

Slomovitz B, de Haydu C, Taub M, et al (2020)

Asbestos and ovarian cancer: examining the historical evidence.

International journal of gynecological cancer : official journal of the International Gynecological Cancer Society pii:ijgc-2020-001672 [Epub ahead of print].

Asbestos recently returned to the spotlight when Johnson & Johnson halted sales of baby powder due to lawsuits claiming that the talc in baby powder may have been contaminated with asbestos, which has been linked to the risk of ovarian cancer development. Although talc and asbestos have some structural similarities, only asbestos is considered causally associated with ovarian cancer by the WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer. While it is useful to understand the types and properties of asbestos and its oncologic biology, the history of its association with ovarian cancer is largely based on retrospective observational studies in women working in high asbestos exposure environments. In reviewing the literature, it is critical to understand the distinction between associative risk and causality, and to examine the strength of association in the context of how the diagnosis of ovarian cancer is made and how the disease should be distinguished from a similar appearing but unrelated neoplasm, malignant mesothelioma. Based on contextual misinterpretation of these factors, it is imperative to question the International Agency for Research on Cancer's assertion that asbestos has a clear causal inference to ovarian cancer. This has important clinical implications in the way patients are conceivably counseled and provides motivation to continue research to improve the understanding of the association between asbestos and ovarian cancer.

RevDate: 2020-10-12

Song PP, Sun XW, Zhang SQ, et al (2020)

[Clinical analysis of 30 cases with asbestos-related occupational tumors].

Zhonghua lao dong wei sheng zhi ye bing za zhi = Zhonghua laodong weisheng zhiyebing zazhi = Chinese journal of industrial hygiene and occupational diseases, 38(9):693-695.

Asbestos is classified as a Class 1 carcinogen by the International Cancer Organization (IARC) , and almost all types of asbestos are carcinogenic. The clinical data of 30 asbestos-induced occupational tumor patients in Qingdao city from January 2002 to May 2019 were analyzed, including 24 cases of asbestos-induced lung cancer and 6 cases of asbestos-induced malignant mesothelioma. Mesothelioma was significantly worse than lung cancer in terms of malignancy, the survival time of patients is shorter, and the mortality rate was higher. Both its diagnostic methods and treatment methods should be improved. The high incidence of asbestos-caused tumors is coming. It is recommended that workers exposed to asbestos dust should undergo regular chest CT examinations for early detection, early diagnosis and early treatment.

RevDate: 2020-10-12

Jiang ZQ, Shao DC, Cheng YR, et al (2020)

[Detection and comparison of fiber count concentration in processing environment of asbestos and man-made mineral fiber].

Zhonghua lao dong wei sheng zhi ye bing za zhi = Zhonghua laodong weisheng zhiyebing zazhi = Chinese journal of industrial hygiene and occupational diseases, 38(9):675-678.

Objective: To connect with the measurement data of asbestos dust fiber concentration in foreign countries, improve the accuracy of asbestos fiber detection in China, and understand the dust exposure in the working environment of asbestos and man-made mineral fiber production and processing sites in Zhejiang Province. The fiber count concentrations of working environment in glass fiber, ceramic fiber and asbestos processing plants were measured and compared. Methods: The dust concentration in the working environment of two glass fiber factories, one ceramic fiber factory and eight asbestos products processing factories was measured. The total dust mass concentration was measured according to GBZ/T 192.1-2007, and the fiber count concentration was measured by phase contrast microscope. Kruskal Wallis was used to test and compare the dust concentration in the working environment of each post. The correlation between asbestos mass concentration and fiber count concentration was analyzed by Spearman correlation. Results: Under the phase contrast microscope, there were many short and fine asbestos fibers in the field of vision, and there were many impurities around. The average dust concentration of asbestos processing plant was 3.2 f/ml, and the dust concentration of cotton ginning was the highest (6.68 f/ml) . There was a significantly positive correlation between asbestos fiber count concentration and mass concentration (r=0.535, P=0.033) . The average fiber count concentration of glass fiber factory was 0.001 f/ml, and the highest was 0.005 f/ml. The average fiber count concentration of ceramic fiber factory was 0.001 f/ml, and the highest was 0.006 f/ml. Conclusion: The fiber count concentration in the working environment of asbestos factory in Zhejiang Province is obviously over the standard, which is one of the important reasons for the high incidence of mesothelioma in this area. Short and small asbestos fibers are easy to be ignored when counting. It is necessary to improve the actual operation process of fiber counting to form a laboratory standard in China.

RevDate: 2020-10-09

Kumagai-Takei N, Nishimura Y, Maeda M, et al (2020)

Effect of asbestos exposure on differentiation and function of cytotoxic T lymphocytes.

Environmental health and preventive medicine, 25(1):59 pii:10.1186/s12199-020-00900-6.

Asbestos exposure is known to cause malignant mesothelioma, which is associated with poor prognosis. We focused on and examined the effect of asbestos exposure on the differentiation and function of cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs). CTLs have the ability to specifically attack tumor cells after being differentiated from naïve CD8+ T cells following antigen stimulation. Exposure to chrysotile B asbestos suppressed the differentiation of CTLs during the mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) and was associated with a decrease in proliferation of CD8+ T cells. Additionally, in an effort to investigate the mechanism associated with suppressed CTL differentiation upon exposure to asbestos, we focused on IL-2, a cytokine involved in T cell proliferation. Our findings indicated that insufficient levels of IL-2 are not the main cause for the suppressed induction of CTLs by asbestos exposure, although they suggest potential improvement in the suppressed CTL function. Furthermore, the functional properties of peripheral blood CD8+ lymphocytes from asbestos-exposed individuals with pleural plaque (PP) and patients with malignant mesothelioma (MM) were examined. MM patients showed lower perforin levels in CD8+ lymphocytes following stimulation compared with PP-positive individuals. The production capacity of IFN-γ in the MM group tended to be lower compared with healthy volunteers or PP-positive individuals. In an effort to determine whether chronic and direct asbestos exposure affected the function of CD8+ T cells, cultured human CD8+ T cells were employed as an in vitro model and subjected to long-term exposure to chrysotile (CH) asbestos. This resulted in decreased levels of intracellular perforin and secreted IFN-γ. Those findings underlie the possibility that impaired CD8+ lymphocyte function is caused by asbestos exposure, which fail to suppress the development of MM. Our studies therefore reveal novel effects of asbestos exposure on CTLs, which might contribute towards the development and implementation of an effective strategy for the prevention and cure of malignant mesothelioma.

RevDate: 2020-10-08

Zhang X, Yang L, Chen W, et al (2020)

Identification of Potential Hub Genes and Therapeutic Drugs in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma by Integrated Bioinformatics Analysis.

Oncology research and treatment pii:000510534 [Epub ahead of print].

INTRODUCTION: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is closely linked to asbestos exposure and is an extremely aggressive tumor with poor prognosis.

OBJECTIVE: Our study aimed to elucidate hub genes and potential drugs in MPM by integrated bioinformatics analysis.

METHODS: GSE42977 was download from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database; the differentially expressed genes (DEGs) with adj.p value <0.05 and |logFC| ≥2 were identified. Gene Ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway analyses were performed by DAVID database. The STRING database was used to construct a protein-protein interaction network, and modules analysis and hub genes acquisition were performed by Cytoscape. The Gene Expression Profiling Interactive Analysis (GEPIA) database was used to assess the impact of hub genes on the prognosis of MPM patients. The Drug-Gene Interaction database (DGIdb) was used to select the related drugs.

RESULTS: A total of 169 upregulated and 70 downregulated DEGs were identified. These DEGs are enriched in the pathway of extracellular matrix-receptor interaction, focal adhesion, PI3K-Akt signaling pathway, and PPAR signaling pathway. Finally, 10 hub genes (CDC20, CDK1, UBE2C, TOP2A, CCNB2, NUSAP1, KIF20A, AURKA, CEP55, and ASPM) were identified, which are considered to be closely related to the poor prognosis of MPM. In addition, 119 related drugs that may have a therapeutic effect on MPM were filtered out.

CONCLUSION: These discovered genes and small-molecule drugs provide some new ideas for further research on MPM.

RevDate: 2020-10-06

Iannuzzi CA, Indovina P, Forte IM, et al (2020)

Pharmacological Inhibition of WEE1 Potentiates the Antitumoral Effect of the dl922-947 Oncolytic Virus in Malignant Mesothelioma Cell Lines.

International journal of molecular sciences, 21(19): pii:ijms21197333.

Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a very aggressive asbestos-related cancer, for which no therapy proves to be effective. We have recently shown that the oncolytic adenovirus dl922-947 had antitumor effects in MM cell lines and murine xenografts. Previous studies demonstrated that dl922-947-induced host cell cycle checkpoint deregulation and consequent DNA lesions associated with the virus efficacy. However, the cellular DNA damage response (DDR) can counteract this virus action. Therefore, we assessed whether AZD1775, an inhibitor of the G2/M DNA damage checkpoint kinase WEE1, could enhance MM cell sensitivity to dl922-947. Through cell viability assays, we found that AZD1775 synergized with dl922-947 selectively in MM cell lines and increased dl922-947-induced cell death, which showed hallmarks of apoptosis (annexinV-positivity, caspase-dependency, BCL-XL decrease, chromatin condensation). Predictably, dl922-947 and/or AZD1775 activated the DDR, as indicated by increased levels of three main DDR players: phosphorylated histone H2AX (γ-H2AX), phospho-replication protein A (RPA)32, phospho-checkpoint kinase 1 (CHK1). Dl922-947 also increased inactive Tyr-15-phosphorylated cyclin-dependent kinase 1 (CDK1), a key WEE1 substrate, which is indicative of G2/M checkpoint activation. This increase in phospho-CDK1 was effectively suppressed by AZD1775, thus suggesting that this compound could, indeed, abrogate the dl922-947-induced DNA damage checkpoint in MM cells. Overall, our data suggest that the dl922-947-AZD1775 combination could be a feasible strategy against MM.

RevDate: 2020-10-06

Rozitis E, Johnson B, Cheng YY, et al (2020)

The Use of Immunohistochemistry, Fluorescence in situ Hybridization, and Emerging Epigenetic Markers in the Diagnosis of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma (MPM): A Review.

Frontiers in oncology, 10:1742.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive asbestos related disease that is generally considered to be difficult to diagnose, stage and treat. The diagnostic process is continuing to evolve and requires highly skilled pathology input, and generally an extensive list of biomarkers for definitive diagnosis. Diagnosis of MPM requires histological evidence of invasion by malignant mesothelial cells often confirmed by various immunohistochemical biomarkers in order to separate it from pleural metastatic carcinoma. Often when invasion of neoplastic mesothelial cells into adjacent tissue is not apparent, further immunohistochemical testing - namely BAP1 and MTAP, as well as FISH testing for loss of p16 (CDKN2A) are used to separate reactive mesothelial proliferation due to benign processes, from MPM. Various combinations of these markers, such as BAP1 and/or MTAP immunohistochemistry alongside FISH testing for loss of p16, have shown excellent sensitivity and specificity in the diagnosis of MPM. Additionally, over the recent years, research into epigenetic marker use in the diagnosis of MPM has gained momentum. Although still in their research stages, various markers in DNA methylation, long non-coding RNA, micro RNA, circular RNA, and histone modifications have all been found to support diagnosis of MPM with generally good sensitivity and specificity. Many of these studies are however, limited by small sample sizes or other study limitations and further research into the area would be beneficial. Epigenetic markers show promise for use in the future to facilitate the diagnosis of MPM.

RevDate: 2020-10-05

Ripley RT (2020)

Extended Pleurectomy and Decortication for Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

Thoracic surgery clinics, 30(4):451-460.

Extended pleurectomy and decortication (ePD) is a difficult operation performed for the surgical resection of malignant pleural mesothelioma that can achieve a macroscopic complete resection with preservation of the lung. With lower perioperative mortality, similar long-term survival, and better tolerance in patients with lower performance status, ePD has become the preferred operation rather than extrapleural pneumonectomy despite lack of a direct comparison. As ePD has become more popular, international collaboration is underway to create surgical guidelines based on collection of operative data. These efforts will improve the safety and standardization of this operation.

RevDate: 2020-10-05

Pass HI, Alimi M, Carbone M, et al (2020)

Mesothelioma Biomarkers: Discovery in Search of Validation.

Thoracic surgery clinics, 30(4):395-423.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an asbestos-related neoplasm that can only be treated successfully when correctly diagnosed and treated early. The asbestos-exposed population is a high-risk group that could benefit from sensitive and specific blood- or tissue-based biomarkers. We review recent work with biomarker development in MPM and literature of the last 20 years on the most promising blood- and tissue-based biomarkers. Proteomic, genomic, and epigenomic platforms are covered. SMRP is the only validated blood-based biomarker with diagnostic, monitoring and prognostic value. To strengthen development and testing of MPM biomarkers, cohorts for validation must be established by enlisting worldwide collaborations.

RevDate: 2020-10-12

Wadowski B, De Rienzo A, R Bueno (2020)

The Molecular Basis of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

Thoracic surgery clinics, 30(4):383-393.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare, aggressive malignancy of the pleural lining associated with asbestos exposure in greater than 80% of cases. It is characterized by molecular heterogeneity both between patients and within individual tumors. Next-generation sequencing technology and novel computational techniques have resulted in a greater understanding of the epigenetic, genetic, and transcriptomic hallmarks of MPM. This article reviews these features and discusses the implications of advances in MPM molecular biology in clinical practice.

RevDate: 2020-10-01

Xue J, Patergnani S, Giorgi C, et al (2020)

Asbestos induces mesothelial cell transformation via HMGB1-driven autophagy.

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America pii:2007622117 [Epub ahead of print].

Asbestos causes malignant transformation of primary human mesothelial cells (HM), leading to mesothelioma. The mechanisms of asbestos carcinogenesis remain enigmatic, as exposure to asbestos induces HM death. However, some asbestos-exposed HM escape cell death, accumulate DNA damage, and may become transformed. We previously demonstrated that, upon asbestos exposure, HM and reactive macrophages releases the high mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) protein that becomes detectable in the tissues near asbestos deposits where HMGB1 triggers chronic inflammation. HMGB1 is also detectable in the sera of asbestos-exposed individuals and mice. Searching for additional biomarkers, we found higher levels of the autophagy marker ATG5 in sera from asbestos-exposed individuals compared to unexposed controls. As we investigated the mechanisms underlying this finding, we discovered that the release of HMGB1 upon asbestos exposure promoted autophagy, allowing a higher fraction of HM to survive asbestos exposure. HMGB1 silencing inhibited autophagy and increased asbestos-induced HM death, thereby decreasing asbestos-induced HM transformation. We demonstrate that autophagy was induced by the cytoplasmic and extracellular fractions of HMGB1 via the engagement of the RAGE receptor and Beclin 1 pathway, while nuclear HMGB1 did not participate in this process. We validated our findings in a novel unique mesothelial conditional HMGB1-knockout (HMGB1-cKO) mouse model. Compared to HMGB1 wild-type mice, mesothelial cells from HMGB1-cKO mice showed significantly reduced autophagy and increased cell death. Autophagy inhibitors chloroquine and desmethylclomipramine increased cell death and reduced asbestos-driven foci formation. In summary, HMGB1 released upon asbestos exposure induces autophagy, promoting HM survival and malignant transformation.

RevDate: 2020-09-29

Cattaneo M, Mendogni P, Damarco F, et al (2020)

Spontaneous diaphragmatic rupture following neoadjuvant chemotherapy and cytoreductive surgery in malignant pleural mesothelioma: A case report and review of the literature.

INTRODUCTION: Diaphragmatic rupture (DR) is an acquired diaphragmatic defect that can cause herniation of abdominal organs into the chest. It is usually a trauma-related lesion, but rarely it can occur spontaneously. Every DR with abdominal herniation should be considered a surgical emergency.

PRESENTATION OF CASE: A 61-year-old male patient, with previous exposure to asbestos, was diagnosed of Stage Ib malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). He underwent neo-adjuvant chemotherapy (three cycle of cisplatin-pemetrexed combination) and a cytoreductive surgery with pleurectomy/decortication. Post-operative course was characterized by prolonged air-leakage (PAL). After three months, during a follow-up CT-scan, a spontaneous diaphragmatic rupture (SDR) with gastric herniation was detected and treated by a laparascopic diaphragmatic repair and suture.

DISCUSSION: Spontaneous diaphragmatic rupture (SDR) is an extremely rare injury of the diaphragm (less than 1% of all DR). In this case, potential predisposing factors for SDR could be: presence of diaphragmatic "locus minoris resistentiae" due to thinning of the diaphragm and increase tissue fragility after neo-adjuvant chemotherapy and diaphragmatic pleural stripping; increased thoraco-abdominal pressure gradient due to PAL and residual pleural space. Thus, we confirmed the feasibility and safety of the laparoscopic approach.

CONCLUSION: We highlight the multifactor etiopathology, the challenging diagnosis and the importance of a prompt treatment of SDR.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Kumagai-Takei N, Lee S, Srinivas B, et al (2020)

The Effects of Asbestos Fibers on Human T Cells.

International journal of molecular sciences, 21(19): pii:ijms21196987.

Asbestos exposure causes malignant tumors such as lung cancer and malignant mesothelioma. The effects of asbestos fibers on immunocompetent cells, however, have not been well studied. Asbestos physically comprises a fibrous substance, which differs from silica particles which are a particulate substance, although chemically it is a mineral silicate. Since silicosis patients previously exposed to silica particles often suffer from lung and autoimmune diseases, it is clear that silica exposure impairs immune tolerance. Similarly, asbestos may alter the immune system in asbestos-exposed individuals. Given that malignant tumors can result following exposure to asbestos, the attenuation of anti-tumor immunity in cases of asbestos exposure is an important area of investigation. We observed the effect of asbestos fibers on T lymphocytes, such as CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs), CD4+ helper T (Th), and regulatory T (Treg) cells, and showed that anti-tumor immunity was attenuated, as demonstrated in a system that stimulates fresh cells isolated from peripheral blood in vitro and a system that is continuously exposed to a cell line. In this manuscript, we introduce the experiments and results of studies on CTLs, as well as Th and Treg cells, and discuss how future changes in immunocompetent cells induced by asbestos fibers can be clinically linked.

RevDate: 2020-09-24

Lysaniuk B, Cely Garcia MF, Mazzeo A, et al (2020)

Where are the landfilled zones? Use of historical geographic information and local spatial knowledge to determine the location of underground asbestos contamination in Sibaté (Colombia).

Environmental research pii:S0013-9351(20)31079-3 [Epub ahead of print].

INTRODUCTION: Sibaté is a municipality located in the central region of Colombia, where the first asbestos-cement facility of the country has been in operation since 1942. Both a malignant pleural mesothelioma cluster and landfilled zones with the presence of an underground friable asbestos layer have been identified in Sibaté. There is still limited knowledge regarding the history of the construction of landfilled zones, and what kinds of materials were deposited. The current study aims to improve our understanding of the history and characteristics of the landfilled zones present in Sibaté.

METHODS: Two participatory workshops with inhabitants of Sibaté were conducted to determine when the landfilled zones were built and their location. Information collected in participatory workshops was crossed with both topographic maps and aerial photographs, giving special attention to zones within the urban area of the municipality that in the past were inundated with water from El Muña Reservoir. An opportunistic soil sampling campaign was conducted in suspected landfilled zones that had not been previously sampled, during the replacement of pipelines of the drainage system ordered by the municipality.

RESULTS: The analysis of historic topographic maps, combined with the interpretation of aerial photographs, confirmed the disposal of residues in areas that were previously inundated with water from El Muña Reservoir, creating landfilled zones in the urban area of Sibaté. On top of these landfilled zones, a football stadium and a football field with an athletic track were built. The location of landfilled zones identified using geographic analysis was similar to the location identified analyzing maps constructed by inhabitants of Sibaté in participatory workshops. The four soil samples collected during an opportunistic sampling campaign confirmed the presence in new locations of the underground friable asbestos layer discovered in previous studies.

DISCUSSION: Based on the extension of the landfilled zones, the presence of friable asbestos in these areas, and the close proximity to a school and residential dwellings, there could have been major dispersion events of asbestos fibers in the urban area of Sibaté during the disposal of residue materials and the construction of the landfilled zones. Thus, important asbestos exposures may have occurred among residents of Sibaté, which is aggravated by the fact that during those years, more than 50% of the population of Sibaté was 25 years old or younger. Although the results of the current study improved our understanding of the processes and chronology associated with the landfilled zones, the uncertainty regarding their exact location remains significant. It is important to continue investigating the adverse health effects resulting from this potential asbestos exposure source.

RevDate: 2020-09-24

Chimed-Ochir O, Arachi D, Driscoll T, et al (2020)

Burden of Mesothelioma Deaths by National Income Category: Current Status and Future Implications.

International journal of environmental research and public health, 17(18): pii:ijerph17186900.

Background: This study compares estimates of the global-level mesothelioma burden with a focus on how existing national mortality data were utilized and further assesses the interrelationship of country-level mesothelioma burden and asbestos use with national income status. Methods: Country-level mesothelioma deaths in the WHO Mortality Database as of December 2019 were analyzed by national income category of countries in terms of data availability and reliability. Numbers of mesothelioma deaths from the study of Odgerel et al. were reanalyzed to assess country-level mesothelioma death burdens by national income status. Results: Among 80 high-income countries, 54 (68%) reported mesothelioma to the WHO and 26 (32%) did not, and among 60 upper middle-income countries, the respective numbers (proportions) were 39 (65%) countries and 21 (35%) countries, respectively. In contrast, among 78 low- and lower middle-income countries, only 11 (14%) reported mesothelioma deaths while 67 (86%) did not. Of the mesothelioma deaths, 29,854 (78%) were attributed to high- and upper middle-income countries, and 8534 (22%) were attributed to low- and lower middle- income countries. Conclusions: The global mesothelioma burden, based on reported numbers, is currently shouldered predominantly by high-income countries; however, mesothelioma burdens will likely manifest soon in upper middle-income and eventually in low and lower middle-income countries.

RevDate: 2020-09-23

Cheng TJ, More SL, Maddaloni MA, et al (2020)

Evaluation of potential gastrointestinal carcinogenicity associated with the ingestion of asbestos.

Reviews on environmental health pii:/j/reveh.ahead-of-print/reveh-2020-0061/reveh-2020-0061.xml [Epub ahead of print].

The inhalation of asbestos, depending on the fiber type and dose, may be associated with the development of mesothelioma and other asbestos-related diseases. However, little is known about the potential adverse effects associated with the ingestion of asbestos. Evidence of asbestos fibers released from asbestos-cement pipes used in water distribution systems has led to concerns of potentially contaminated drinking water. The purpose of this study is to determine whether ingestion of asbestos fibers may lead to cancerous effects on the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Data from animal and human studies were analyzed using a weight-of-evidence approach to evaluate the potential risk of GI cancers associated with asbestos ingestion. Seventeen human and 23 animal studies were identified and evaluated in this study. Animal studies were conducted in multiple species with inconsistent dosing protocols. Overall, animal studies reported that the asbestos fibers, irrespective of fiber type and dose, failed to produce any definitive GI carcinogenic effect. The 17 identified human epidemiological studies reported the ingestion of asbestos-contaminated water with concentrations from 1 to 71,350 million fibers per liter (MFL). A majority of the epidemiology studies reported statistically significant increases in multiple GI-specific cancers. However, these findings are confounded due to several critical study limitations including flawed study design, small sample size, selection bias, lack of individual exposure history, lack of adequate latency, and the inability to account for confounders including occupational history, diet, and smoking history. Based on our weight-of-evidence assessment, there is insufficient evidence of causality between the ingestion of asbestos and an increased incidence of GI cancers.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Ohnishi Y, Fujii T, Sakamoto T, et al (2020)

Malignant mesothelioma metastatic to the oral region and latest topics (Review).

Molecular and clinical oncology, 13(5):61.

Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a rare neoplasm with poor prognosis that usually develops after exposure to asbestos, and is characterised by aggressive local invasion and metastatic spread. While metastasis to the oral cavity is very rare, a total of 23 cases of MM metastasising to the oral cavity were identifed. Among those, the tongue was the most common site of metastasis (39.1%), and frequently involved the epithelioid MM cell type. Recent studies have elucidated the mechanisms underlying the development of MM. Chronic inflammation has been implicated in promoting MM growth and was shown to play a key role by driving the release of high mobility group box protein 1 following asbestos deposition. Inherited heterozygous germline mutations in the deubiquitylase BRCA-associated protein 1 were shown to increase the incidence of MM in some families. Infection by the simian virus 40 was also found to be associated with the occurrence of MM. Moreover, the increasing incidence rates of MM, together with its propensity to metastasise to the oral cavity, indicate that clinicians and pathologists should be highly aware of this disease. Furthermore, identification of novel serum biomarkers would enable better screening and treatment of MM, and improve the survival outcomes.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Wahlbuhl E, Liehr T, Rincic M, et al (2020)

Cytogenomic characterization of three murine malignant mesothelioma tumor cell lines.

Molecular cytogenetics, 13:43.

Background: Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a rare aggressive cancer primary located in pleura and lung. MMs can be divided into biphasic, epithelioid and sarcomatoid subtypes. In majority of cases MMs are induced by asbestos fiber exposure. As latency period after asbestos exposure ranges between ~ 10 and 60 years MMs are mainly observed in elder people. Human MM, being a rare tumor type, lacks detailed cytogenetic data, while molecular genetic studies have been undertaken more frequently. However, murine MM cell lines are also regularly applied to get more insight into MM biology and to test new therapy strategies.

Results: Here the murine MM cell lines AB1, AB22 and AC29 were studied by molecular cytogenetics and molecular karyotyping. Interestingly, yet there were no genetic or genomic studies undertaken for these already in 1992 established cell lines. The obtained data on genomic imbalances in these murine cell lines was translated into the human genome as previously reported based on human and murine genomic browsers.

Conclusions: It turned out that all three cell lines showed high similarities in copy number variants as observed typically in human MM. Also, all three cell lines were most similar to human epithelioid MMs, and should be used as models therefore.

RevDate: 2020-10-01

Fisher SA, Peddle-McIntyre CJ, Burton K, et al (2020)

Voluntary exercise in mesothelioma: effects on tumour growth and treatment response in a murine model.

BMC research notes, 13(1):435.

OBJECTIVE: There is substantial evidence that exercise can safely reduce the risk of cancer and improve survival in different human cancer populations. Long latency periods associated with carcinogen-induced cancers like asbestos induced mesothelioma provide an opportunity to implement exercise as an intervention to delay or prevent disease development. However, there are limited studies investigating the ability of exercise to prevent or delay cancer, and exercise as a preventive strategy has never been assessed in models with a known carcinogen. We investigated the potential of voluntary exercise (VE) to delay development of asbestos related disease (ARD) in our well-characterised, asbestos induced MexTAg model of mesothelioma.

RESULTS: Asbestos exposed MexTAg mice were given continuous or delayed access to VE and ARD assessed over time. We found that the addition of VE did not affect ARD development in asbestos exposed MexTAg mice. However, non-asbestos exposed, aged matched control mice participated in significantly more VE behaviours, suggesting subclinical development of ARD after asbestos exposure had a greater impact on VE participation than age alone. These data highlight the importance of model choice and the potential limitation that some pre-clinical studies may not accurately represent the clinical paradigm, particularly in the context of prevention studies.

RevDate: 2020-10-01

Costa C, Indovina P, Mattioli E, et al (2020)

P53-regulated miR-320a targets PDL1 and is downregulated in malignant mesothelioma.

Cell death & disease, 11(9):748.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive cancer, related to asbestos exposure, which has a dismal prognosis. MPM diagnosis is late and often challenging, suggesting the need to identify more reliable molecular biomarkers. Here, we set out to identify differentially expressed miRNAs in epithelioid, biphasic, and sarcomatoid MPMs versus normal mesothelium and explored specific miRNA contribution to mesothelial tumorigenesis. We screened an LNA™-based miRNA-microrray with 14 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) MPMs and 6 normal controls. Through real-time qRT-PCR we extended the analysis of a miRNA subset and further investigated miR-320a role through state-of-the-art techniques. We identified 16 upregulated and 32 downregulated miRNAs in MPMs versus normal tissue, including the previously identified potential biomarkers miR-21, miR-126, miR-143, miR-145. We showed in an extended series that miR-145, miR-10b, and miR-320a levels can discriminate tumor versus controls with high specificity and sensitivity. We focused on miR-320a because other family members were found downregulated in MPMs. However, stable miR-320a ectopic expression induced higher proliferation and migration ability, whereas miR-320a silencing reduced these processes, not supporting a classic tumor-suppressor role in MPM cell lines. Among putative targets, we found that miR-320a binds the 3'-UTR of the immune inhibitory receptor ligand PDL1 and, consistently, miR-320a modulation affects PDL1 levels in MPM cells. Finally, we showed that p53 over-expression induces the upregulation of miR-320a, along with miR-200a and miR-34a, both known to target PDL1, and reduces PDL1 levels in MPM cells. Our data suggest that PDL1 expression might be due to a defective p53-regulated miRNA response, which could contribute to MPM immune evasion or tumorigenesis through tumor-intrinsic roles.

RevDate: 2020-10-12

Reardon ES, Shukla V, Xi S, et al (2020)

UHRF1 Is a Novel Druggable Epigenetic Target in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

Journal of thoracic oncology : official publication of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer pii:S1556-0864(20)30716-4 [Epub ahead of print].

INTRODUCTION: Ubiquitin-like with plant homeodomain and ring finger domains 1 (UHRF1) encodes a master regulator of DNA methylation that has emerged as an epigenetic driver in human cancers. To date, no studies have evaluated UHRF1 expression in malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). This study was undertaken to explore the therapeutic potential of targeting UHRF1 in MPM.

METHODS: Microarray, real-time quantitative reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, immunoblot, and immunohistochemistry techniques were used to evaluate UHRF1 expression in normal mesothelial cells (NMCs) cultured with or without asbestos, MPM lines, normal pleura, and primary MPM specimens. The impact of UHRF1 expression on MPM patient survival was evaluated using two independent databases. RNA-sequencing, proliferation, invasion, and colony formation assays, and murine xenograft experiments were performed to evaluate gene expression and growth of MPM cells after biochemical or pharmacologic inhibition of UHRF1 expression.

RESULTS: UHRF1 expression was significantly higher in MPM lines and specimens relative to NMC and normal pleura. Asbestos induced UHRF1 expression in NMC. The overexpression of UHRF1 was associated with decreased overall survival in patients with MPM. UHRF1 knockdown reversed genomewide DNA hypomethylation, and inhibited proliferation, invasion, and clonogenicity of MPM cells, and growth of MPM xenografts. These effects were phenocopied by the repurposed chemotherapeutic agent, mithramycin. Biochemical or pharmacologic up-regulation of p53 significantly reduced UHRF1 expression in MPM cells. RNA-sequencing experiments exhibited the pleiotropic effects of UHRF1 down-regulation and identified novel, clinically relevant biomarkers of UHRF1 expression in MPM.

CONCLUSIONS: UHRF1 is an epigenetic driver in MPM. These findings support the efforts to target UHRF1 expression or activity for mesothelioma therapy.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Tada Y, Tagawa M, Yusa T, et al (2020)

Diffuse pleural thickening and thoracic contraction: An indistinguishable case from malignant pleural mesothelioma.

SAGE open medical case reports, 8:2050313X20948716.

The differential diagnosis of reactive mesothelial hyperplasia and mesothelioma is difficult. We present a rare case of diffuse pleural thickening with thoracic contraction that was indistinguishable from mesothelioma. A 66-year-old woman with no history of asbestos exposure visited our hospital with a complaint of dyspnea. The clinical findings included circumferential pleural thickening on chest computed tomography image and a high concentration of hyaluronic acid in the pleural fluid. Pleural biopsies obtained by thoracoscopy under local anesthesia were pathologically consistent with mesothelioma, but the patient refused to take any kind of mesothelioma treatments. Four months later, she consented to a surgical pleural biopsy under general anesthesia to obtain larger tissue samples, which included typical proliferating polygonal cells positive for CAM5.2, calretinin, WT-1, D2-40, CK5/6, epithelial membrane antigen, and glucose transporter-1 and negative for carcinoembryonic antigen, BerEP4, and MOC31. The analysis was consistent with diagnosis of epithelioid mesothelioma. Fluorescence in situ hybridization, however, showed the presence of p16 gene, and the expression of BRCA1-associated protein-1 was detected by immunohistochemistry. Our final diagnosis was diffuse pleural thickening unrelated to asbestos exposure. Differential diagnosis of diffuse pleural thickening and malignant mesothelioma is thus difficult and routine immunohistochemical examinations are often insufficient for accurate diagnosis. Multiple diagnostic methods are required for correct diagnosis in a clinically marginal case.

RevDate: 2020-09-24

Lam SK, Yan S, Xu S, et al (2020)

Targeting polyamine as a novel therapy in xenograft models of malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 148:138-148.

INTRODUCTION: Inhalation of asbestos fibers is the key culprit in malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). Although the import and use of asbestos have been restricted, the incidence of MPM continues to increase globally due to the prolonged lag time in malignant transformation. The development of a novel adjuvant therapy for the minority of individuals with resectable early-stage disease and effective treatment for those with unresectable MPM are urgently needed. Our preliminary data revealed that ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) is highly expressed in MPM xenografts. This study aimed to determine the treatment effects of α-difluoromethylornithine (DFMO), a specific ODC inhibitor, in MPM xenografts.

RESULTS: In an "extended adjuvant DFMO treatment" setting, nude mice were fed with DFMO for 7 days prior to inoculation of 200,000 cells. DFMO suppressed tumor growth and increased median survival in both xenografts. In H226 xenograft, 43 % of treated mice had not reached the humane endpoint by day 132, mimicking long-term survival. DFMO decreased spermidine, increased nitrotyrosine and activated apoptosis in both xenografts. Furthermore, increase in nitrosocysteine, intratumoral IL-6, keratinocyte chemoattractant and TNFα, DNA lesion and inhibition of the Akt/mTOR pathway were induced by DFMO in H226 xenograft. In "DFMO treatment" setting, 107 cells were inoculated into nude mice and DFMO treatment commenced when tumor size reached ∼50-100 mm3. DFMO also suppressed tumor growth by similar mechanisms. Supplementation with spermidine reversed the therapeutic effect of DFMO. DFMO increased actin nitration at tyrosine 53 and inhibited actin polymerization.

CONCLUSION: DFMO is preclinically effective in treating MPM.

RevDate: 2020-10-13

Fuso Nerini I, Roca E, Mannarino L, et al (2020)

Is DNA repair a potential target for effective therapies against malignant mesothelioma?.

Cancer treatment reviews, 90:102101 pii:S0305-7372(20)30139-0 [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare malignancy mainly caused by asbestos exposure. Germinal and acquired mutations in genes of DNA repair pathways, in particular of homologous recombination repair, are frequent in MPM. Here we overview the available experimental data suggesting that an impaired DNA repair system affects MPM pathogenesis by leaving lesions through the genome unresolved. DNA repair defects represent a vulnerability of MPM, and it seems plausible to propose that leveraging these deficiencies could have therapeutic potential for patients with MPM, for whom there is an urgent need of more effective therapies.

RevDate: 2020-10-04

Prabhakaran S, Hocking A, Kim C, et al (2020)

The potential utility of GATA binding protein 3 for diagnosis of malignant pleural mesotheliomas.

Human pathology, 105:1-8 pii:S0046-8177(20)30167-2 [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant pleural mesothelioma is associated with asbestos exposure and poor outcomes. The usefulness of immunohistochemistry for diagnosis of sarcomatoid mesothelioma, especially the desmoplastic type, is limited, and more effective markers are required. GATA binding protein 3 (GATA3) has been suggested as a diagnostic marker for sarcomatoid mesothelioma. The potential usefulness of GATA3 for prognostication and its clinical and pathological correlations in different subtypes of mesothelioma have not been evaluated. We investigated the immunohistochemical labeling and associations for GATA3, BRCA1-associated protein 1 (BAP1), and Ki67 labeling in three major histological types of pleural malignant mesotheliomas. We examined 149 clinically annotated malignant mesotheliomas and assessed associations of GATA3 expression with clinical variables and prognosis. In addition, we labeled 10 cases of fibrous pleuritis with GATA3, all of which were negative. GATA3 was positive in 75 of 149 (50%) mesotheliomas, with the highest incidence of labeling seen in the sarcomatoid subtype (73%), compared with the biphasic (50%) and epithelioid (40%), mesotheliomas. A total of eight desmoplastic mesotheliomas showed labeling with GATA3. Patients whose tumors had sarcomatoid histology showed poorer survival than those with the other subtypes (p < 0.001), but overall GATA3 labeling did not have a statistically significant association with survival (p = 0.602). There was no association of GATA3 labeling and BAP1 status or Ki67 index. Our study includes the largest cohort of mesotheliomas that has been labeled for GATA3 to date. GATA3 is a useful marker for sarcomatoid mesothelioma, including the desmoplastic subtype. Discordance in GATA3 and BAP1 labeling of epithelioid and sarcomatoid components in the biphasic subtype is not uncommon.

RevDate: 2020-09-23
CmpDate: 2020-09-23

Nowak AK, Lesterhuis WJ, Kok PS, et al (2020)

Durvalumab with first-line chemotherapy in previously untreated malignant pleural mesothelioma (DREAM): a multicentre, single-arm, phase 2 trial with a safety run-in.

The Lancet. Oncology, 21(9):1213-1223.

BACKGROUND: There is a strong unmet need to improve systemic therapy in mesothelioma. Chemotherapy with cisplatin and pemetrexed improves survival in malignant pleural mesothelioma, and immune checkpoint inhibitors are an emerging treatment in this disease. We aimed to evaluate the activity of durvalumab, an anti-PD-L1 antibody, given during and after first-line chemotherapy with cisplatin and pemetrexed in patients with advanced malignant pleural mesothelioma.

METHODS: DREAM was a multicentre, single-arm, open-label, phase 2 trial done in nine hospitals in Australia. Eligible patients were aged 18 years or older and had histologically confirmed malignant pleural mesothelioma considered unsuitable for cancer-directed surgery, an Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status of 0 or 1, and measurable disease as per the modified Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors version 1.0 (mRECIST) for mesothelioma that was previously untreated with systemic therapy. All histological subtypes were eligible. The first six participants were treated for two cycles in a safety run-in. All participants received cisplatin 75 mg/m2, pemetrexed 500 mg/m2, and durvalumab 1125 mg intravenously on day 1 of a 3-weekly schedule for a maximum of six cycles. Change from cisplatin to carboplatin with an area under the curve of 5 was permitted. Durvalumab was continued for a maximum of 12 months. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival at 6 months, measured according to mRECIST for malignant pleural mesothelioma and analysed in the intention-to-treat population. Safety analyses included all participants who receive at least one dose of any study drug. This study is registered with the Australia New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry, ACTRN12616001170415.

FINDINGS: Between Dec 28, 2016, and Sept 27, 2017, 55 participants were enrolled. 54 patients were eligible and were followed up for a median of 28·2 months (IQR 26·5-30·2). 31 (57%; 95% CI 44-70) of 54 patients were alive and progression-free at 6 months. The most common grade 3-4 adverse events were neutropenia (seven [13%] patients), nausea (six [11%]), and anaemia (four [7%]). A total of 60 serious adverse events occurred in 29 participants, five of which were considered possibly related to durvalumab. Five patients died during the study treatment; none of these five deaths were attributed to study treatment.

INTERPRETATION: The combination of durvalumab, cisplatin, and pemetrexed has promising activity and an acceptable safety profile that warrants further investigation in a randomised phase 3 trial.

FUNDING: AstraZeneca.

RevDate: 2020-09-07

Dell'Anno I, Barone E, Mutti L, et al (2020)

Tissue expression of lactate transporters (MCT1 and MCT4) and prognosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma (brief report).

Journal of translational medicine, 18(1):341 pii:10.1186/s12967-020-02487-6.

BACKGROUND: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive neoplasm of the pleura, mainly related to asbestos exposure. As in other solid tumors, malignant cells exhibit high glucose uptake and glycolytic rates with increased lactic acid efflux into the interstitial space. Lactate transport into and out of cells, crucial to maintaining intracellular pH homeostasis and glycolysis, is carried out by monocarboxylate transporters (MCTs) and the chaperone basigin (CD147). We set out to examine the clinical significance of basigin, MCT1 and MCT4 in the context of MPM and to evaluate their expression in relation to the evolution of the disease.

METHODS: We used immunohistochemistry to measure the expression of basigin, MCT1 and MCT4 in a cohort of 135 individuals with MPM compared to a series of 15 non-MPM pleura specimens. Moreover, by Kaplan-Meier and Cox analyses we evaluated whether an expression over the average of these markers could be associated with the patients' overall survival (OS).

RESULTS: We detected positive staining of basigin, MCT1, and MCT4 in most MPM specimens. In particular, MCT4 was always positive in malignant tissues but undetectable in the 4 normal pleural specimens incorporated within the tissue microarray. This was confirmed in the additional series of 15 normal pleural samples. Moreover, MCT4 expression was significantly associated with reduced OS.

CONCLUSION: In this study, the tissue expression of basigin did not prove to be exploitable as a diagnostic or prognostic marker for MPM patients. The expression of MCT1 was not informative either, being tightly correlated with that of basigin. However, the expression of MCT4 showed promise as a diagnostic/therapeutic and prognostic biomarker.

RevDate: 2020-10-01

Cakiroglu E, S Senturk (2020)

Genomics and Functional Genomics of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

International journal of molecular sciences, 21(17):.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare, aggressive cancer of the mesothelial cells lining the pleural surface of the chest wall and lung. The etiology of MPM is strongly associated with prior exposure to asbestos fibers, and the median survival rate of the diagnosed patients is approximately one year. Despite the latest advancements in surgical techniques and systemic therapies, currently available treatment modalities of MPM fail to provide long-term survival. The increasing incidence of MPM highlights the need for finding effective treatments. Targeted therapies offer personalized treatments in many cancers. However, targeted therapy in MPM is not recommended by clinical guidelines mainly because of poor target definition. A better understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms and the predictors of poor clinical outcomes of MPM is required to identify novel targets and develop precise and effective treatments. Recent advances in the genomics and functional genomics fields have provided groundbreaking insights into the genomic and molecular profiles of MPM and enabled the functional characterization of the genetic alterations. This review provides a comprehensive overview of the relevant literature and highlights the potential of state-of-the-art genomics and functional genomics research to facilitate the development of novel diagnostics and therapeutic modalities in MPM.

RevDate: 2020-09-03

Mori D, Kido S, Hiraki M, et al (2020)

Peritoneal adenomatoid (microcystic) mesothelioma.

There are several reports of pleural adenomatoid (microcystic) mesothelioma, but peritoneal adenomatoid mesothelioma is extremely rare. A 64-year-old Japanese woman presented with no symptoms and no asbestos exposure history. An abdominal computed tomography scan revealed multiple hypervascular masses on the liver surface, pelvic cavity and anterior peritoneum. Over 10 pieces of the multiple resected tumors showed numerous microcysts composed of a bland mesothelial cell background with rich capillary vessels. Focally, atypical cells with bizarre nuclei with prominent nucleoli were observed. Adenomatoid mesothelioma was suspected based on histochemical, immunohistochemical and fluorescence in situ hybridization findings. The tumors relapsed 4 years later and metastasized to the lung, but the patient remains alive 7 years after the first tumor resection surgery. Although the prognosis of adenomatoid mesothelioma of pleural origin is poor, the progression of this peritoneal case is slow.

RevDate: 2020-10-13

Petrof O, Neyens T, Nuyts V, et al (2020)

On the impact of residential history in the spatial analysis of diseases with a long latency period: A study of mesothelioma in Belgium.

Statistics in medicine, 39(26):3840-3866.

Mesothelioma is a rare cancer caused by exposure to asbestos. Belgium has a known long history of asbestos production, resulting in one of the highest mesothelioma mortality rates worldwide. While the production of asbestos has stopped completely, the long latency period of mesothelioma, which can fluctuate between 20 and 40 years after exposure, causes incidences still to be frequent. Mesothelioma's long incubation time affects our assessment of its geographical distribution as well. Since patients' residential locations are likely to change a number of times throughout their lives, the location where the patients develop the disease is often far from the location where they were exposed to asbestos. Using the residential history of patients, we propose the use of a convolution multiple membership model (MMM), which includes both a spatial conditional autoregressive and an unstructured random effect. Pancreatic cancer patients are used as a control population, reflecting the population at risk for mesothelioma. Results show the impact of the residential mobility on the geographical risk estimation, as well as the importance of acknowledging the latency period of a disease. A simulation study was conducted to investigate the properties of the convolution MMM. The robustness of the results for the convolution MMM is assessed via a sensitivity analysis.

RevDate: 2020-09-01

Sayan M, Mamidanna S, Fuat Eren M, et al (2020)

New horizons from novel therapies in malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Advances in respiratory medicine, 88(4):343-351.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a relatively rare, but highly lethal cancer of the pleural mesothelial cells. Its pathoge-nesis is integrally linked to asbestos exposure. In spite of recent developments providing a more detailed understanding of the pathogenesis, the outcomes continue to be poor. To date, trimodality therapy involving surgery coupled with chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy remains the standard of therapy. The development of resistance of the tumor cells to radiation and several che-motherapeutic agents poses even greater challenges in the management of this cancer. Ionizing radiation damages cancer cell DNA and aids in therapeutic response, but it also activates cell survival signaling pathways that helps the tumor cells to overcome radiation-induced cytotoxicity. A careful evaluation of the biology involved in mesothelioma with an emphasis on the workings of pro-survival signaling pathways might offer some guidance for treatment options. This review focuses on the existing treatment options for MPM, novel treatment approaches based on recent studies combining the use of inhibitors which target different pro-survival pathways, and radiotherapy to optimize treatment.

RevDate: 2020-09-14

Ito F, Yanatori I, Maeda Y, et al (2020)

Asbestos conceives Fe(II)-dependent mutagenic stromal milieu through ceaseless macrophage ferroptosis and β-catenin induction in mesothelium.

Redox biology, 36:101616.

Asbestos is still a social burden worldwide as a carcinogen causing malignant mesothelioma. Whereas recent studies suggest that local iron reduction is a preventive strategy against carcinogenesis, little is known regarding the cellular and molecular mechanisms surrounding excess iron. Here by differentially using high-risk and low-risk asbestos fibers (crocidolite and anthophyllite, respectively), we identified asbestos-induced mutagenic milieu for mesothelial cells. Rat and cell experiments revealed that phagocytosis of asbestos by macrophages results in their distinctive necrotic death; initially lysosome-depenent cell death and later ferroptosis, which increase intra- and extra-cellular catalytic Fe(II). DNA damage in mesothelial cells, as assessed by 8-hydroxy-2'-deoxyguanosine and γ-H2AX, increased after crocidolite exposure during regeneration accompanied by β-catenin activation. Conversely, β-catenin overexpression in mesothelial cells induced higher intracellular catalytic Fe(II) with increased G2/M cell-cycle fraction, when p16INK4A genomic loci localized more peripherally in the nucleus. Mesothelial cells after challenge of H2O2 under β-catenin overexpression presented low p16INK4A expression with a high incidence of deletion in p16INK4A locus. Thus, crocidolite generated catalytic Fe(II)-rich mutagenic environment for mesothelial cells by necrotizing macrophages with lysosomal cell death and ferroptosis. These results suggest novel molecular strategies to prevent mesothelial carcinogenesis after asbestos exposure.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Bai Y, Wang X, Hou J, et al (2020)

Identification of a Five-Gene Signature for Predicting Survival in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Patients.

Frontiers in genetics, 11:899.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), predominantly caused by asbestos exposure, is a highly aggressive cancer with poor prognosis. The staging systems currently used in clinics is inadequate in evaluating the prognosis of MPM. In this study, a five-gene signature was developed and enrolled into a prognostic risk score model by LASSO Cox regression analysis based on two expression profiling datasets (GSE2549 and GSE51024) from Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO). The five-gene signature was further validated using the Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) MPM dataset. Univariate and multivariate Cox analyses proved that the five-gene signature was an independent prognostic factor for MPM. The signature remained statistically significant upon stratification by Brigham stage, AJCC stage, gender, tumor size, and lymph node status. Time-dependent receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve indicated good performance of our model in predicting 1- and 2-years overall survival in MPM patients. The C-index was 0.784 for GSE2549 and 0.753 for the TCGA dataset showing moderate predictive accuracy of our model. Furthermore, Gene Set Enrichment Analysis suggested that the five-gene signature was related to pathways resulting in MPM tumor progression. Together, we have established a five-gene signature significantly associated with prognosis in MPM patients. Hence, the five-genes signature may serve as a potentially useful prognostic tool for MPM patients.

RevDate: 2020-10-01

Airoldi C, Ferrante D, Mirabelli D, et al (2020)

Evaluation of Nonresponse Bias in a Case-Control Study of Pleural Mesothelioma.

International journal of environmental research and public health, 17(17):.

Nonparticipation limits the power of epidemiological studies, and can cause bias. In a case-control study on pleural malignant mesothelioma (MM), we found low participation in interviews (63%) among controls. Our goal was to characterize nonresponder controls and assess nonresponse bias in our study. We selected all nonresponder controls (204) and a random sample of responder controls (174). Data were obtained linking hospital admissions and town registrars, and concordance between sources was assessed. Nonresponse bias was evaluated using a logistic regression model applying the inverse probability weighting approach. The odds ratio (OR) for the status of the respondents was 0.61 (95% confidence interval (CI): 0.33-1.16) for controls aged 61-70, 0.37 (CI: 0.20-0.66) for those aged 71-80, and 0.40 (CI: 0.20-0.80) for those aged above 80 (reference group: ≤60 years). Controls with low education level had lower OR (0.47; CI: 0.26-0.84). After adjustment, the ORs for MM by categories of cumulative exposure to asbestos were similar to the unadjusted results, ranging from 4.6 (CI: 1.8-11.7) for cumulative exposures between 0.1 and 1 f/mL-y to 57.5 (CI: 20.2-163.9) above 10 f/mL-y. Responder controls were younger and had higher education level. Nevertheless, there was little evidence of bias from nonresponse in the risk estimates of MM.

RevDate: 2020-08-22

Mujahed T, Tazelaar HD, Sukov WR, et al (2020)

Malignant Peritoneal Mesothelioma Arising in Young Adults With Long-standing Indwelling Intra-abdominal Shunt Catheters.

The American journal of surgical pathology [Epub ahead of print].

Only 50% to 70% of patients with mesothelioma report asbestos exposure. Other exposures (eg, radiation) play a role in some cases, but some patients have no obvious cause. We describe a series of patients with long-standing indwelling intra-abdominal shunt catheters who developed malignant peritoneal mesothelioma, suggesting a novel association. We identified 7 patients who had shunts and subsequently developed mesothelioma (5 women; median age: 31 y, range: 18 to 45 y). Clinical history and pathology materials were reviewed, and RNA sequencing was performed. Clinical presentations varied; 6 patients had hydrocephalus and a ventriculoperitoneal shunt, and 1 patient had portal hypertension and a portoatrial shunt. The median duration of shunt therapy in 5 cases was 29 years (range: 12 to 35 y); the remaining 2 patients also had shunts for many years, but specific details were unavailable. Two patients had radiotherapy for malignancies in childhood. One had an alleged exposure to asbestos and 1 had prior exposure to talc. The rest had no known risk factors. Histologically, all tumors were purely epithelioid. Treatments included surgical debulking, chemotherapy, and palliative care. All 7 died of disease (median survival: 7 mo, range: 1 to 18 mo). Molecular testing showed loss of NF2 and CDKN2A/B and a BAP1 mutation in 1 case, and no genomic alterations associated with mesothelioma in 2 cases. Peritoneal mesothelioma may represent a complication of long-standing indwelling shunt catheters. The mechanism is unknown, but chronic peritoneal irritation may play a role. Albeit rare, mesothelioma should be considered in patients with a shunt who present with new ascites.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Johnson TG, Schelch K, Lai K, et al (2020)

YB-1 Knockdown Inhibits the Proliferation of Mesothelioma Cells through Multiple Mechanisms.

Cancers, 12(8):.

Y-box binding protein-1 (YB-1) is a multifunctional oncoprotein that has been shown to regulate proliferation, invasion and metastasis in a variety of cancer types. We previously demonstrated that YB-1 is overexpressed in mesothelioma cells and its knockdown significantly reduces tumour cell proliferation, migration, and invasion. However, the mechanisms driving these effects are unclear. Here, we utilised an unbiased RNA-seq approach to characterise the changes to gene expression caused by loss of YB-1 knockdown in three mesothelioma cell lines (MSTO-211H, VMC23 and REN cells). Bioinformatic analysis showed that YB-1 knockdown regulated 150 common genes that were enriched for regulators of mitosis, integrins and extracellular matrix organisation. However, each cell line also displayed unique gene expression signatures, that were differentially enriched for cell death or cell cycle control. Interestingly, deregulation of STAT3 and p53-pathways were a key differential between each cell line. Using flow cytometry, apoptosis assays and single-cell time-lapse imaging, we confirmed that MSTO-211H, VMC23 and REN cells underwent either increased cell death, G1 arrest or aberrant mitotic division, respectively. In conclusion, this data indicates that YB-1 knockdown affects a core set of genes in mesothelioma cells. Loss of YB-1 causes a cascade of events that leads to reduced mesothelioma proliferation, dependent on the underlying functionality of the STAT3/p53-pathways and the genetic landscape of the cell.

RevDate: 2020-09-22

Torres-Roman JS, Gomez-Rubio V, Sanchez-Trujillo L, et al (2020)

Geographic study of mortality due to mesothelioma in Peru and its evolution.

Cancer epidemiology, 68:101791.

BACKGROUND: Peru has a public health problem because of asbestos imports. We analyzed the mortality trends for mesothelioma in Peru and its provinces from 2005 to 2014 and estimated their relationship with the amount of asbestos imported previously.

METHODS: We computed age-standardized mortality rates (ASMRs) per 100,000 population (direct method and SEGI world standard population reference), and the standardized mortality ratio (SMR). The relationship between the amount of asbestos imported annually along the period 1965-2010 and the number of mesothelioma deaths per year from 2005 to 2014 was estimated by log-linear Poisson regression models and Pearson correlation calculations.

RESULTS: After correcting the number of deaths, Peru registered 428 cases (or 430 when corrected cases are rounded by sex) between 2005 and 2014. The highest ASMRs were in Arequipa and Callao (range: 0.40-0.41/100,000 population), followed by Huancavelica (0.36/100,000 population). This translates into approximately one death per each 68-111 of asbestos tons imported. The latency period for the higher level of positive correlation found was 8 years (r = 0.8). Male female sex ratio was lower in provinces such as Junin and Hunacavelica with geological asbestos risk.

CONCLUSIONS: Two patterns of mesothelioma risk have been detected, occupational and environmental. During the 2002-2006 years, Peru increased the asbestos use. If crocidolite imports were also increased, this could be behind the 8 years latency period detected. Peru should boost strategies towards the total ban of all forms of asbestos.

RevDate: 2020-08-20

Johnson NF (2020)

Inhalation Toxicity of Talc.

Journal of aerosol medicine and pulmonary drug delivery [Epub ahead of print].

Respirable talc powder (RTP) is a complex mineral mixture of talc along with accessory minerals, including tremolite, anthophyllite, quartz, magnesite, dolomite, antigorite, lizardite, and chlorite. The industrial mining, milling, and processing of talc ore is associated with elevated incidences of fibrotic and neoplastic diseases, which are also seen among workers exposed to RTP in secondary industries and individuals using processed cosmetic talc for personal use. There is controversial evidence of a link between the talc-induced lung diseases and a potential contamination with asbestos fibers. This controversy is fueled by inadequate exposure data and the complex mineralogy and terminology of the accessory minerals. Talc aerosols exhibit a wide range of mineral habits, including particulates and fibrous structures that have dimensional and compositional characteristics related to the development of asbestos-related lung disease. The inhalation toxicology of RTP is based on the analysis of occupational hygiene and animal inhalation studies conducted between the 1940s and the 1990s and more recent mechanistic studies conducted both in vivo and in vitro. The review of talc toxicity studies reveals that the occupational studies provide only equivocal links between any of the components of the aerosols and the development of pulmonary cancer; however, there is substantial evidence of an association between the aerosols and pleural and pulmonary fibrosis and the development of nonmalignant respiratory disease. The animal inhalation and implantation studies appear to be less than optimal, which also appears to be true for the in vivo and in vitro studies. The mechanistic studies have identified the key pathogenic characteristics of asbestos to be long and thin fibers that are durable in lung tissues and fluids. Talc toxicity studies show that talc particles and fibers are durable and can remain in the lung for up to 40 years after the end of exposure. This extended tissue residence is considered to constitute a continuing tissue exposure that is capable of inducing the documented inflammatory and proliferative response. There is less consensus as to whether there is a threshold fiber length effect, as long, thin fibers (>5 μm) form only a small fraction of talc aerosols and the possible role of fibers >5 μm in the translocation from the lung to the pleura and their association with pleural fibrotic and carcinogenic lesions. Long, thin fibers are preferentially deposited in hot spots in the lung, such as airway bifurcations, areas typically associated with the development of lung cancer. The platy structures typical of talc can form oblate structures behaving more as fibers in the air stream, and these have also been shown to deposit preferentially in such locations. The review of the inhalation toxicity of talc provides a plausible explanation for the carcinogenic potential of RTP.

RevDate: 2020-08-20

Alpert N, van Gerwen M, Flores R, et al (2020)

Gender Differences in Outcomes of Patients With Mesothelioma.

American journal of clinical oncology [Epub ahead of print].

BACKGROUND: Mesothelioma is a rare and deadly form of cancer, linked to asbestos exposure. Although the United Kingdom has banned asbestos, the incidence rate remains high. Previous research has indicated that female individuals have better survival than male individuals, but this has never been examined in the United Kingdom.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Pleural mesothelioma cases from 2005 to 2014 were extracted from the United Kingdom Lung Cancer Dataset. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess the clinical and demographic factors associated with gender. A multivariable Cox proportional hazards model and propensity matching methods were used to assess gender differences in overall survival while accounting for potential confounders.

RESULTS: There were 8479 (87.8%) male and 1765 (17.2%) female individuals included in the analysis. Female individuals were significantly younger, with more epithelial histology than male individuals. Female individuals had significantly better overall survival (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.85, 95% confidence interval, 0.81-0.90). Results remained similar when stratifying by age and performance status, and when limiting to patients with epithelial histology.

CONCLUSIONS: The study increases knowledge about gender differences in mesothelioma survival and is the first to directly examine this in the United Kingdom. It further disentangles the effects of age, histology, and health status. Increased estrogen may improve survival and could provide a potential target for future therapies.

RevDate: 2020-08-19

Barbieri PG, D Mirabelli (2020)

Diagnosis of lung cancer: a necropsy-based study of 128 cases (1997-2016).

Tumori [Epub ahead of print].

BACKGROUND: The diagnosis of lung cancer (LC) may be difficult to make in the elderly. We report on the diagnostic elements available in life in an LC necropsy case series of asbestos-exposed workers and describe the frequency of non-neoplastic asbestos-related diseases as biological exposure indices.

METHODS: We reviewed pathologic and clinical records of an unselected series of autopsies (1997-2016) in patients with LC employed in the Monfalcone shipyards. We assessed the consistency with autopsy results of diagnoses based on, respectively, radiologic, cytologic, and histologic findings.

RESULTS: Data on 128 autopsy-confirmed LC cases were available; in life, 119 had been diagnosed as LC. Among these, 49 had histologic confirmation of diagnosis (17 with immunophenotyping); histology had been negative in 4. Cytology had been the main positive finding and the basis for diagnosis in 24 cases, but had been negative in 13. Chest computed tomography had been the basis for diagnosis in 45; in 18 cases, it had been negative. Nine patients had received a diagnosis different from LC, among whom 4 had been suspected to have malignant pleural mesothelioma by chest computed tomography. Pleural plaques were found in 124 and histologic asbestosis in 46 cases.

CONCLUSIONS: Autopsies confirmed all LC diagnoses received in life, including 46 that would have been considered only possible LC based on clinical workup. The overall survival in this case series was poor. The high prevalence of pleural plaques and asbestosis suggest severity of asbestos exposures.

RevDate: 2020-08-27

Uhlenhopp DJ, Saliares A, Gaduputi V, et al (2020)

An Unpleasant Surprise: Abdominal Presentation of Malignant Mesothelioma.

Journal of investigative medicine high impact case reports, 8:2324709620950121.

Malignant mesothelioma is an aggressive cancer associated with asbestos exposure with median survival time of 8 to 14 months following diagnosis. Given that mesothelial cells also line the peritoneum and pericardium, malignant mesothelioma can present in unusual sites and in patients with nonrespiratory complaints. A 73-year-old male presented to the emergency department for worsening intermittent diffuse abdominal pain for the past 3 months with associated unintentional 40-pound weight loss, early satiety, and diarrhea. He denied exposure to asbestos. Computed tomography imaging revealed multiple masses concerning for malignancy including the primary retroperitoneal mass, a mass involving the terminal ileum, and a mass in the right upper lung. Esophagogastroduodenoscopy demonstrated significant mass effect within the stomach without signs of endoluminal infiltration. Computed tomography-guided biopsy of the retroperitoneal abdominal and intramuscular paraspinal masses was performed. Stage IV epithelioid mesothelioma was confirmed when hematoxylin and eosin staining revealed pleomorphic malignancy nuclei containing a vesicular chromatin pattern and prominent nucleoli and immunohistochemical staining was positive for CK Oscar, cytokeratin 7, GATA3, calretinin, EMA, and CK5/6. He was started on cisplatin, pemetrexed, and bevacizumab but developed severe abdominal pain with pneumoperitoneum and bowel perforation 1 month later and expired shortly thereafter. To our knowledge, this represents a highly atypical presentation of malignant mesothelioma considering the involvement of the retroperitoneum with diffuse lesions in the abdominopelvic cavity and thorax (sparing the lung pleurae). This case also calls attention to the occurrence of malignant mesothelioma in patients without known asbestos exposure and the crucial role of pathology in diagnosing atypical presentations.

RevDate: 2020-08-09

Malpica A, Euscher ED, Marques-Piubelli ML, et al (2020)

Malignant Mesothelioma of the Peritoneum in Women: A Clinicopathologic Study of 164 Cases.

The American journal of surgical pathology [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant mesothelioma of the peritoneum in women is an uncommon tumor. In this study, we present the clinicopathologic features of 164 such cases seen in our institution over a period of 42 years (1974-2016). Clinical information, pathologic findings, immunohistochemical results, and follow-up were recorded. Hematoxylin and eosin-stained slides were reviewed in all cases. Patients ranged in age from 3 to 85 years, median: 49 years. Most patients presented with abdominal/pelvic pain, although some were asymptomatic, presented with paraneoplastic syndromes or cervical lymphadenopathy. Overall, 9% of patients had a history of direct or indirect exposure to asbestos. In total, 31% and 69% of patients had either a personal or family history of other tumors; most of these tumors are currently recognized as part of a syndrome. Genetic testing information was available in 5 patients: BAP-1 germline mutation (1), type 2 neurofibromatosis (1), Lynch syndrome (1), McCune-Albright syndrome (1), no BAP-1 or TP53 mutation (1). Most cases had gross and microscopic features typical of malignant mesothelioma of the peritoneum in women; however, some had confounding features such as gelatinous appearance, signet ring or clear cells, and well-differentiated papillary mesothelioma-like areas. Calretinin and WT-1 were the markers more frequently expressed, and up to 23% of the cases showed PAX-8 expression. Patients' treatments predominantly included: chemotherapy, cytoreductive surgery, and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy. On multivariate analysis, the predominance of deciduoid cells, nuclear grade 3, and the absence of surgical treatment were associated with worse overall survival (OS). For all patients, the 3- and 5-year OS were 74.3% and 57.4%, respectively. The 3- and 5-year OS for patients treated with cytoreductive surgery, and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy were 88.9% and 77.8%, respectively.

RevDate: 2020-08-10

Kazaz IO, Teoman AS, S Mungan (2020)

Mesothelioma of the tunica vaginalis testis: A case report.

Indian journal of pathology & microbiology, 63(3):475-477.

Primary mesotheliomas of the tunica vaginalis testis are very rare malignant tumors. They are generally associated with exposure to asbestos. They may manifest as hydrocele, testis tumor, inguinal hernia, or epididymitis. After differential diagnosis, treatment is primarily surgical. Adjuvant therapeutic methods for mesotheliomas of the tunica vaginalis testis, with their high mortality, are controversial. Here, we present a mesothelioma case derived from tunica vaginalis testis acting as long-term pyocele with no known asbestos exposure.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Wang Q, Wang Q, Zhao Z, et al (2020)

Pleural translocation and lesions by pulmonary exposed multi-walled carbon nanotubes.

Journal of toxicologic pathology, 33(3):145-151.

Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are recently developed tubular nanomaterials, with diameters ranging from a few nanometers to tens of nanometers, and the length reaching up to several micrometers. They can be either single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) or multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs). Due to their nano-scaled structure, CNTs have a unique set of mechanical, electrical, and chemical properties that make them useful in information technologies, optoelectronics, energy technologies, material sciences, medical technologies, and other fields. However, with the wide application and increasing production of CNTs, their potential risks have led to concerns regarding their impact on environment and health. The shape of some types of CNTs is similar to asbestos fibers, which suggests that these CNTs may cause characteristic pleural diseases similar to those found in asbestos-exposed humans, such as pleural plaques and malignant mesothelioma. Experimental data indicate that CNTs can induce lung and pleural lesions, inflammation, pleural fibrosis, lung tumors, and malignant mesothelioma upon inhalation in the experimental animals. In this review, we focus on the potential of MWCNTs to induce diseases similar to those by asbestos, molecular and cellular mechanisms associated with these diseases, and we discuss a method for evaluating the pleural toxicity of MWCNTs.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Plesker R, Köhler K, von Gerlach S, et al (2020)

Reactive mesothelial hyperplasia mimicking mesothelioma in an African green monkey (Chlorocebus aethiops).

Primate biology, 7(1):5-12.

A spontaneous reactive mesothelial hyperplasia occurred in a female, 15.7-year-old African green monkey (grivet; Chlorocebus aethiops). At necropsy, massive effusions were found in the abdomen, the thorax, and the pericardium. Additionally, multiple small, beige-gray nodules were detected on the serosal surfaces of the abdominal organs. Histopathologically, the mesothelial cells resembled the epithelioid subtype of a mesothelioma, but no infiltrative or invasive growth could be demonstrated. The mesothelial cells on the thoracis, liver, and intestinal serosa were accompanied by chronic serositis. Mesothelial cells expressed cytokeratin, vimentin, calretinin, desmin, Wilms Tumor 1 (WT-1) protein, and epithelial membrane antigen (EMA). Cells were negative for carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA), cluster of differentiation 15 (CD15), and podoplanin. Ultrastructurally, cells revealed a moderate amount of microvilli of medium length, perinuclear tonofilament bundles, and long desmosomes. In fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) for the detection of characteristic gene loss (p16; CDKN2A), NF2, and MTAP, no deletions were detected. No asbestos fibers and no presence of Simian virus 40 antigen (SV40) could be demonstrated.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Marzullo A, Serio G, Pezzuto F, et al (2020)

A Single Liver Metastasis from Pleural Biphasic Mesothelioma.

Diagnostics (Basel, Switzerland), 10(8):.

Virtually any malignancy can metastasize to the liver. Large solitary metastases are rare and can be difficult to distinguish from primary tumors. Malignant mesothelioma is often considered as a locally invasive cancer but tumor dissemination to extra-thoracic sites is possible, and the liver can be involved. Herein, we present a rare case of pleural mesothelioma with a solitary large liver metastasis diagnosed postmortem in a ninety-two-year-old man with 35 years of exposure to asbestos. Results of immunohistochemical staining of the pleural and liver tumor were similar, both positive for low-molecular weight keratins, calretinin, vimentin, and podoplanin, and negative for Claudin-4, TTF1, CEA, BerEP4, CK7, CK19, CK20, BAP1, Hep Par1, p40, and WT1. Fluorescent in-situ hybridization (FISH) for p16/CDKN2A was also performed and a homozygous deletion was detected in both tumors, supporting the diagnosis of mesothelioma. Reporting this case, we would like to point out that extra-thoracic dissemination from pleural mesothelioma, even if exceptional, can occur. In cases where differential diagnoses are challenging, the value of ancillary techniques and a practical approach to diagnostic work-up is of primary importance.

RevDate: 2020-10-10

Luo Y, Deng J, Cui Y, et al (2020)

Long-term instillation to four natural representative chrysotile of China induce the inactivation of P53 and P16 and the activation of C-JUN and C-FOS in the lung tissues of Wistar rats.

Toxicology letters, 333:140-149 pii:S0378-4274(20)30351-9 [Epub ahead of print].

Chrysotile is the only type of asbestos still widely exploited, and all kinds of asbestos including chrysotile was classified as a group I carcinogen by the IARC. There is a wealth of evidence that chrysotile can cause a range of cancers, including cancer of the lung, larynx, ovary, and mesothelioma. As the second largest chrysotile producer, China is at great risk of occupational exposure. Moreover, our previous experiment and some other studies have shown that the toxicity of mineral fibre from various mining areas may be different. To explore the oncogenic potential of chrysotile from different mining areas of China, Wistar rats were administered 0.5 mL chrysotile asbestos suspension of 2.0 mg/mL (from Akesai, Gansu; Mangnai, Qinghai; XinKang, Sichuan; and Shannan, Shaanxi) dissolved in saline by intratracheal instillation once-monthly and were sacrificed at 1 mo, 6 mo, and 12 mo. Our results found that chrysotile caused lung inflammation and lung tissue damage. Moreover, prolonged exposure of chrysotile can induce inactivation of the tumor suppressor gene P53 and P16 and activation of the protooncogene C-JUN and C-FOS both in the messenger RNA and protein level. In addition, chrysotile from Shannan and XinKang has a stronger effect which may link to cancer than that from Akesai and Mangnai.

RevDate: 2020-10-09

Cerciello F, Choi M, Sinicropi-Yao SL, et al (2020)

Verification of a Blood-Based Targeted Proteomics Signature for Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma.

Cancer epidemiology, biomarkers & prevention : a publication of the American Association for Cancer Research, cosponsored by the American Society of Preventive Oncology, 29(10):1973-1982.

BACKGROUND: We have verified a mass spectrometry (MS)-based targeted proteomics signature for the detection of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) from the blood.

METHODS: A seven-peptide biomarker MPM signature by targeted proteomics in serum was identified in a previous independent study. Here, we have verified the predictive accuracy of a reduced version of that signature, now composed of six-peptide biomarkers. We have applied liquid chromatography-selected reaction monitoring (LC-SRM), also known as multiple-reaction monitoring (MRM), for the investigation of 402 serum samples from 213 patients with MPM and 189 cancer-free asbestos-exposed donors from the United States, Australia, and Europe.

RESULTS: Each of the biomarkers composing the signature was independently informative, with no apparent functional or physical relation to each other. The multiplexing possibility offered by MS proteomics allowed their integration into a single signature with a higher discriminating capacity than that of the single biomarkers alone. The strategy allowed in this way to increase their potential utility for clinical decisions. The signature discriminated patients with MPM and asbestos-exposed donors with AUC of 0.738. For early-stage MPM, AUC was 0.765. This signature was also prognostic, and Kaplan-Meier analysis showed a significant difference between high- and low-risk groups with an HR of 1.659 (95% CI, 1.075-2.562; P = 0.021).

CONCLUSIONS: Targeted proteomics allowed the development of a multianalyte signature with diagnostic and prognostic potential for MPM from the blood.

IMPACT: The proteomic signature represents an additional diagnostic approach for informing clinical decisions for patients at risk for MPM.

RevDate: 2020-09-05

Javadi J, Dobra K, A Hjerpe (2020)

Multiplex Soluble Biomarker Analysis from Pleural Effusion.

Biomolecules, 10(8):.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a highly aggressive and therapy resistant pleural malignancy that is caused by asbestos exposure. MPM is associated with poor prognosis and a short patient survival. The survival time is strongly influenced by the subtype of the tumor. Dyspnea and accumulation of pleural effusion in the pleural cavity are common symptoms of MPM. The diagnostic distinction from other malignancies and reactive conditions is done using histopathology or cytopathology, always supported by immunohistochemistry, and sometimes also by analyses of soluble biomarkers in effusion supernatant. We evaluated the soluble angiogenesis related molecules as possible prognostic and diagnostic biomarkers for MPM by Luminex multiplex assay. Pleural effusion from 42 patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM), 36 patients with adenocarcinoma (AD) and 40 benign (BE) effusions were analyzed for 10 different analytes that, in previous studies, were associated with angiogenesis, consisting of Angiopoietin-1, HGF, MMP-7, Osteopontin, TIMP-1, Galectin, Mesothelin, NRG1-b1, Syndecan-1 (SDC-1) and VEGF by a Human Premixed Multi-Analyte Luminex kit. We found that shed SDC-1 and MMP-7 levels were significantly lower, whereas Mesothelin and Galectin-1 levels were significantly higher in malignant mesothelioma effusions, compared to adenocarcinoma. Galectin-1, HGF, Mesothelin, MMP-7, Osteopontin, shed SDC-1, NRG1-β1, VEGF and TIMP-1 were significantly higher in malignant pleural mesothelioma effusions compared to benign samples. Moreover, there is a negative correlation between Mesothelin and shed SDC-1 and positive correlation between VEGF, Angiopoietin-1 and shed SDC-1 level in the pleural effusion from malignant cases. Shed SDC-1 and VEGF have a prognostic value in malignant mesothelioma patients. Collectively, our data suggest that MMP-7, shed SDC-1, Mesothelin and Galectin-1 can be diagnostic and VEGF and SDC-1 prognostic markers in MPM patients. Additionally, Galectin-1, HGF, Mesothelin, MMP-7, Osteopontin, shed SDC-1 and TIMP-1 can be diagnostic for malignant cases.

RevDate: 2020-08-05

Lehnert M, Weber DG, Taeger D, et al (2020)

Determinants of plasma calretinin in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma.

BMC research notes, 13(1):359.

OBJECTIVE: Calretinin is a well-known immunohistochemical tissue marker in the diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma. Promising results also indicate the use in early detection. In the present cross-sectional survey, correlations of calretinin plasma levels with clinical features were investigated. Plasma samples of 60 patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) and 111 cancer-free controls formerly exposed to asbestos were compared. Calretinin concentrations were determined in plasma using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).

RESULTS: The median concentration was higher in MPM patients than in controls (0.79 vs. 0.23 ng/ml; p < 0.0001). Patients with epithelioid MPM or biphasic MPM had higher calretinin plasma levels than patients with sarcomatoid MPM. Strong expression of calretinin in the tumor tissue was associated with higher plasma levels. Preoperative patients showed higher levels of calretinin than patients after thoracic surgery (1.20 vs. 0.67 ng/ml; p = 0.096). The suitability of plasma calretinin has been confirmed as a tumor marker in the differential diagnosis of epithelioid MPM. The value of plasma calretinin for therapy monitoring or as a prognostic marker should be further investigated.

RevDate: 2020-09-23
CmpDate: 2020-09-23

Schüz J, Bukhtiyarov I, Olsson A, et al (2020)

Occupational cohort study of current and former workers exposed to chrysotile in mine and processing facilities in Asbest, the Russian Federation: Cohort profile of the Asbest Chrysotile Cohort study.

PloS one, 15(7):e0236475.

A historical cohort study in workers occupationally exposed to chrysotile was set up in the town of Asbest, the Russian Federation, to study their cause-specific mortality, with a focus on cancer. Chrysotile has different chemical and physical properties compared with other asbestos fibres; therefore it is important to conduct studies specifically of chrysotile and in different geographical regions to improve the knowledge about its carcinogenicity. Setting was the town of Asbest, Sverdlovsk oblast, the Russian Federation. Participants were all current and former employees with at least one year of employment between 1/1/1975 and 31/12/2010 in the mine, enrichment factories, auto-transport and external rail transportation departments, the central laboratory, and the explosives unit of the company. Of the 35,837 cohort members, 12,729 (35.5%) had died (2,373 of them of cancer, including 10 of mesothelioma), 18,799 (52.5%) were known to be alive at the end of the observation period (2015), and 4,309 (12.0%) were censored before the end of 2015. Mean follow-up duration was 21.7 years in men and 25.9 years in women. The mean age at death was 59.4 years in men and 66.5 years in women. This is the largest occupational cohort of chrysotile workers to date, and the only one with a large proportion of exposed female workers.

RevDate: 2020-09-17
CmpDate: 2020-09-17

Gandhi M, S Nair (2020)

New vistas in malignant mesothelioma: MicroRNA architecture and NRF2/MAPK signal transduction.

Life sciences, 257:118123.

Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a cancer of the mesothelial lining of the pleura, peritoneum, pericardium and testes. The most common form is asbestos-linked MM that is etiologically linked to repeated asbestos exposure with a long latency period, although non-asbestos MM has also been reported. Late diagnosis, poor survival rates, lack of diagnostic and prognostic markers act as major impediments in the clinical management of MM. Despite advances in immune checkpoint inhibition and CAR T-cell-based therapies, MM which is of different histologic subtypes remains challenging to treat. We review microRNAs (miRNAs) and the miRNA interactome implicated in MM which can be useful as circulating miRNA biomarkers for early diagnosis of MM and as biomarkers for prognostication in MM. Further, we underscore the relevance of the NRF2/MAPK signal transduction pathway that has been implicated in MM which may be useful as druggable targets or as biomarkers of predictive response. In addition, since MM is driven partly by inflammation, we elucidate chemopreventive phytochemicals that are beneficial in MM, either via crosstalk with the NRF2/MAPK pathway or via concerted anticancer mechanisms, and may be of benefit as adjuvants in chemotherapy. Taken together, a multifactorial approach comprising identification of miRNA target hubs and NRF2/MAPK biomarkers along with appropriately designed clinical trials may enable early detection and faster intervention in MM translating into better patient outcomes for this aggressive cancer.

RevDate: 2020-08-12

Bonelli M, Terenziani R, Zoppi S, et al (2020)

Dual Inhibition of CDK4/6 and PI3K/AKT/mTOR Signaling Impairs Energy Metabolism in MPM Cancer Cells.

International journal of molecular sciences, 21(14):.

Background: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is an aggressive malignancy associated to asbestos exposure. One of the most frequent genetic alteration in MPM patients is CDKN2A/ARF loss, leading to aberrant activation of the Rb pathway. In MPM cells, we previously demonstrated the therapeutic efficacy of targeting this signaling with the CDK4/6 inhibitor palbociclib in combination with PI3K/mTOR inhibitors. Here, we investigated whether such combination may have an impact on cell energy metabolism. Methods: The study was performed in MPM cells of different histotypes; metabolic analyses were conducted by measuring GLUT-1 expression and glucose uptake/consumption, and by SeaHorse technologies. Results: MPM cell models differed for their ability to adapt to metabolic stress conditions, such as glucose starvation and hypoxia. Independently of these differences, combined treatments with palbociclib and PI3K/mTOR inhibitors inhibited cell proliferation more efficaciously than single agents. The drugs alone reduced glucose uptake/consumption as well as glycolysis, and their combination further enhanced these effects under both normoxic and hypoxic conditions. Moreover, the drug combinations significantly impaired mitochondrial respiration as compared with individual treatments. These metabolic effects were mediated by the concomitant inhibition of Rb/E2F/c-myc and PI3K/AKT/mTOR signaling. Conclusions: Dual blockade of glycolysis and respiration contributes to the anti-tumor efficacy of palbociclib-PI3K/mTOR inhibitors combination.

RevDate: 2020-07-23

Voloaca OM, Greenhalgh CJ, Cole LM, et al (2020)

Laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry as a Novel Clinical Imaging Tool to Detect Asbestos Fibres in Malignant Mesothelioma.

Rapid communications in mass spectrometry : RCM [Epub ahead of print].

RATIONALE: Malignant pleural mesothelioma is an extremely aggressive and incurable malignancy associated with prior exposure to asbestos fibres. Difficulties remain in relation to early diagnosis, notably due to impeded identification of asbestos in lung tissue. This study describes a novel laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) imaging approach to identify asbestos within mesothelioma models with clinical significance.

METHODS: Human mesothelioma cells were exposed to different types of asbestos fibres and prepared on plastic slides for LA-ICP-MS analysis. No further sample preparation was required prior to analysis, which was performed using an NWR Image 266nm laser ablation system coupled to an Element XR sector-field ICP mass spectrometer, with a lateral resolution of 2 μm. Data was processed using LA-ICP-MS ImageTool v1.7 with the final graphic production made using DPlot Software.

RESULTS: Four different mineral fibres were successfully identified within the mesothelioma samples based on some of the most abundant elements that make up these fibres (Si, Mg and Fe). Using LA-ICP-MS as an imaging tool provided information on the spatial distribution of the fibres at cellular level, which is essential in asbestos detection within tissue samples. Based on the metal counts generated by the different types of asbestos, different fibres can be identified based on shape, size, and elemental composition. Detection of Ca was attempted but requires further optimisation.

CONCLUSION: Asbestos fibres detection in the lung tissues is very useful, if not necessary, to complete the pathological diagnosis of asbestos-related malignancies in medicolegal field. For the first time, this study demonstrates the successful application of LA-ICP-MS imaging to identify asbestos fibres and other mineral fibres within mesothelioma samples. Ultimately, high-resolution, fast-speed LA-ICP-MS analysis has the potential to be integrated into clinical workflow to aid earlier detection and stratification of mesothelioma patient samples.

RevDate: 2020-07-23

Pass HI, Alimi M, Carbone M, et al (2020)

Mesothelioma Biomarkers: A Review Highlighting Contributions from the Early Detection Research Network.

Cancer epidemiology, biomarkers & prevention : a publication of the American Association for Cancer Research, cosponsored by the American Society of Preventive Oncology pii:1055-9965.EPI-20-0083 [Epub ahead of print].

BACKGROUND: Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma (MPM) is an asbestos related neoplasm which can only be treated successfully when correctly diagnosed and treated in early stages. The asbestos exposed population serves as a high risk group which could benefit from sensitive and specific blood based or tissue based biomarkers. This review details the recent work with biomarker development in MPM and the contributions of the NCI Early Detection Research Network Biomarker Developmental Laboratory of NYU Langone Medical Center.

METHODS: The literature of the last 20 years was reviewed in order to comment on the most promising of the blood and tissue based biomarkers. Proteomic, genomic and epigenomic platforms as well as novel studies such as "breath testing" are covered.

RESULTS: Soluble Mesothelin-Related Proteins (SMRP) have been characterized extensively and constitute an FDA-approved biomarker in plasmawith diagnostic, monitoring and prognostic value in MPM. Osteopontin is found to be a valuable prognostic biomarker for MPM, while its utility in diagnosis is slightly lower. Other biomarkers such as calretinin, fibulin 3, and High-Mobility Group Box 1 (HMGB1) remain under study and need international validation trials with large cohorts of cases and controls to demonstrate any utility.

CONCLUSIONS: The EDRN has played a key role in the development and testing of MPM biomarkers by enlisting collaborations all over the world.

IMPACT: A comprehensive understanding of previously investigated biomarkers and their utility in screening and early diagnosis of MPM will provide guidance for further future research.

RevDate: 2020-08-12

Loreto C, Ledda C, Tumino R, et al (2020)

Activation of caspase-3 in malignant mesothelioma induced by asbestiform fiber: an in vivo study.

Journal of biological regulators and homeostatic agents, 34(3):1163-1166.

RevDate: 2020-09-08
CmpDate: 2020-09-08

Brook MS, Black PM, Salmond J, et al (2020)

Erionite in Auckland bedrock and malignant mesothelioma: an emerging public and occupational health hazard?.

The New Zealand medical journal, 133(1518):73-78.

Overseas, emerging research has shown that where erionite is present in bedrock as a zeolite, and then subsequently disturbed and blown into the atmosphere, resulting exposure is associated with health effects similar to those caused by asbestos, including malignant mesothelioma (MM). Erionite-induced MM is thought to be particularly prevalent in the construction and quarrying industries, in regions where rock containing erionite is disturbed. In 2015, the then Government Chief Scientist, Sir Peter Gluckman, reported that erionite was a more potent carcinogen than asbestos, and more recent studies have established its presence in the Auckland Region. However, globally at present, there are no established occupational exposure limits for erionite, standard sampling and analytical methods or exposure mitigation guidelines. Given the many major construction projects being carried out in Auckland at the present time, which involve the removal of large quantities of bedrock containing erionite, an assessment of the health risks such activities pose to the public is needed.

RevDate: 2020-07-19

Cheng L, Na L, Xu XL, et al (2020)

Progress in the understanding of the immune microenvironment and immunotherapy in malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Current drug targets pii:CDT-EPUB-108263 [Epub ahead of print].

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a remarkably aggressive thoracic malignancy with a limited survival of only 5-12 months. However, MPM still remains unresponsive to conventional standards of treatment, including pleurectomy and decortication, extrapleural pneumonectomy for resectable disease with or without chemotherapy, and/or radiation therapy. The mechanism of carcinogenesis has not been fully elucidated, although approximately 80% of cases can still be linked to asbestos exposure. The tumor immune microenvironment (TME) has been proven to play an important role in MPM pathogenesis and treatment outcome. Several molecular pathways have been implicated in the MPM tumor microenvironment, such as angiogenesis, apoptosis, cell cycle regulation, and stromal processes. Immunotherapy has already shown promising results in other thoracic solid tumors, such as non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). However, immunotherapy has shown less convincing results in MPM than in melanoma and NSCLC. A multicenter, randomized trial (DETERMINE) proved that immune checkpoint inhibition using tremelimumab, an anti-cytotoxic T lymphocyte-associated protein 4 (CTLA-4) antibody, failed to improve median overall survival. Therefore, it is important to explore the relationship between the characteristics of the tumor microenvironment and immunotherapy. Here, we review the heterogeneity of the TME and the progress in the understanding of the immune microenvironment and immunotherapy in MPM to explore the mechanisms of resistance to immunotherapy.

RevDate: 2020-09-08

Remon J, Nadal E, Dómine M, et al (2020)

Malignant pleural mesothelioma: Treatment patterns and outcomes from the Spanish Lung Cancer Group.

Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 147:83-90.

BACKGROUND: Malignant mesothelioma is a rare but aggressive tumor arising from the pleura, typically associated with exposure to asbestos. The purpose of this investigation was to describe mesothelioma patient characteristics, treatment patterns, and outcomes in Spain.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Patients diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma of the pleura were recorded in an anonymous online database (BEMME, Epidemiologic Spanish Malignant Mesothelioma Database) from June 2008 through May 2013. Patient and tumor characteristics at time of diagnosis, as well as subsequent treatments (surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy), were collected. Among patients treated with chemotherapy, we explored type of chemotherapy regimen and outcomes by treatments.

RESULTS: A total of 560 malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) patients were recorded. The median age at diagnosis was 68 years, mainly with epithelioid histology (62 %), and any asbestos exposure was noted in 45 % of patients. Nearly two-thirds of patients (71 %) received chemotherapy, mainly platinum-pemetrexed combination, as part of their treatment. Surgery and radiotherapy were given in 36 % and 17 % of patients, respectively. The median overall survival (OS) in the whole cohort was 13.0 months (95 % confidence interval (CI), 11.1-14.8 months) with 1-year OS of 53.2 % (95 % CI, 48.7-57.7 %). In patients receiving first-line chemotherapy (N = 315), the median OS was 13.4 months (95 % CI, 10.8-16.0 months), reaching 20.2 months (95 % CI, 17.2-23.2 months) for those 68 patients receiving maintenance chemotherapy. Results of multivariate analyses showed significant association of ECOG-performance status, histology and treatment response with improved OS in MPM patients treated with palliative chemotherapy.

CONCLUSIONS: Despite multimodal therapeutic intervention, survival of patients with mesothelioma in Spain remains poor. Although it did not reach significance in the multivariate analysis, a meaningful additional survival benefit was observed among those patients receiving maintenance chemotherapy.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Hjerpe A, Abd Own S, K Dobra (2020)

Integrative approach to cytologic and molecular diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Translational lung cancer research, 9(3):934-943.

The global incidence of malignant mesothelioma (MM) causes considerable disease burden, suffering and health care costs. Beside preventive measures and ban the use of asbestos, early diagnosis would largely improve the chance of curative treatment. Current histologic criteria, however, requiring presence of invasion in the surrounding fatty tissue fail to identify MM in sufficiently early stage. Unilateral accumulation of pleural effusion is one of the earliest clinical manifestations of MM that occurs in approximately 90% of the patients. Therapeutic thoracocenthesis is necessary to remove the fluid and to relieve patients' symptoms. This effusion is easily accessible and offers early and minimally invasive diagnosis by combining cytology with immunologic, molecular- and biomarker analyses. Typically, the fluid is rich in malignant cells and cell groups, but incipient stages of the disease may be difficult to recognize as the malignant cells can be masked by presence of inflammatory or reactive mesothelial cells. Recurrent, hemorrhagic and cell rich effusion should always be suspicious for MM and adequately prepared and analyzed to provide necessary information for subsequent therapy. Importantly, early detection of MM by integrating cytology and molecular approaches has high sensitivity and positive predictive value and has a major impact on patient survival. Thus, a conclusive positive MM cytology should lead to treatment without delay. This review summarizes molecular and diagnostic criteria of MM diagnosis.

RevDate: 2020-09-24

Świątkowska B (2020)

[The Amiantus Program in Poland - 20 years of implementation].

Medycyna pracy, 71(5):595-601.

BACKGROUND: Despite the ban on the production of asbestos-containing materials, introduced in Poland over 20 years ago, new cases of asbestos-related diseases are still being recorded. Systematic control of respiratory function in people exposed to asbestos dust is, therefore, extremely important due to the biological properties of this mineral.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: The Amiantus preventive medical examination program was undertaken in 2000 to implement the legal rights of former employees of asbestos processing plants for this type of examinations. People who have ever been employed in such factories have been authorized to use preventive medical examinations for the rest of their lives. The research is continuous, spread over time and focused, in particular, on the assessment of the respiratory system.

RESULTS: Since the beginning of the program, throughout 20 years of its implementation, 8329 people have been examined, including 5199 (62.4%) men for whom a total of 34 454 medical examinations have been carried out. During the program period, the percentage of diagnosed pathologies increased from 8% in 2000 to 25% in 2019. Overall, 2078 asbestos-related diseases were diagnosed among former employees of asbestos processing plants under the Amiantus Program, which accounted for 25% of this group. Among all diseases caused by exposure to asbestos, the most common were: asbestosis (1880 cases - 90.5%), lung cancer (121 cases - 5.8%) and pleural mesothelioma (77 cases - 3.7%). Diseases of pleura in the form of plaques and diffuse pleural thickening were diagnosed in 40% of the examined patients, while radiological pulmonary shadows affected over 65% of former employees of asbestos processing plants.

CONCLUSIONS: The Amiantus Program, thanks to the long observation period, enabled monitoring the health of former employees exposed to asbestos, and created a unique opportunity to carry out epidemiological analyzes. These studies allowed the authors to expand their knowledge of the natural history of asbestos-related diseases. Med Pr. 2020;71(5):595-601.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Indovina P, Forte IM, Pentimalli F, et al (2020)

Targeting SRC Family Kinases in Mesothelioma: Time to Upgrade.

Cancers, 12(7):.

Abstract: Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is a deadly tumor mainly caused by exposure to asbestos. Unfortunately, no current treatment is able to change significantly the natural history of the disease, which has a poor prognosis in the majority of patients. The non-receptor tyrosine kinase SRC and other SRC family kinase (SFK) members are frequently hyperactivated in many cancer types, including MM. Several works have indeed suggested that SFKs underlie MM cell proliferation, survival, motility, and invasion, overall affecting multiple oncogenic pathways. Consistently, SFK inhibitors effectively counteracted MM cancerous features at the preclinical level. Dasatinib, a multi-kinase inhibitor targeting SFKs, was also assessed in clinical trials either as second-line treatment for patients with unresectable MM or, more recently, as a neoadjuvant agent in patients with resectable MM. Here, we provide an overview of the molecular mechanisms implicating SFKs in MM progression and discuss possible strategies for a more successful clinical application of SFK inhibitors. Our aim is to stimulate discussion and further consideration of these agents in better designed preclinical and clinical studies to make the most of another class of powerful antitumoral drugs, which too often are lost in translation when applied to MM.

RevDate: 2020-07-10

Louw A, Creaney J, Thomas A, et al (2020)

Histologically Diverse BAP1-Deficient Melanocytic Tumors in a Patient With BAP1 Tumor Predisposition Syndrome.

The American Journal of dermatopathology [Epub ahead of print].

BRCA1-associated protein-1 (BAP1)-deficient cutaneous tumors are common in patients with BAP1 tumor predisposition syndrome, frequently presenting before other associated neoplasms, and can serve as an early marker to identify individuals with this disease. The typical lesions are dermal based and composed of a combination of larger epithelioid melanocytes with abundant glassy cytoplasm and smaller cells resembling those of a conventional nevus. There is often a component of interspersed lymphocytes. However, BAP1-deficient melanocytic tumors can show a spectrum of histologic appearances, ranging from lesions with pure epithelioid, pure conventional nevus, or rhabdoid cells and tumors with an intraepidermal component. To demonstrate such morphologic variation, we present a case of a 50-year-old woman with multiple histologically diverse BAP1-deficient melanocytic tumors and germline BAP1 mutation, identified after a diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma. We also discuss the pathogenesis and potential histopathological and clinical indications of germline versus sporadic etiology in the assessment of BAP1-deficient melanocytic tumors.

RevDate: 2020-08-10

Schüz J, H Kromhout (2020)

Re Ferrante et al (2020). Mortality and mesothelioma incidence among chrysotile asbestos miners in Balangero, Italy: A cohort study.

American journal of industrial medicine, 63(9):834-835.

RevDate: 2020-07-08

Maat A, Abdullah S, Schouten G, et al (2020)

Video-assisted biopsy and talc pleurodesis for malignant pleural mesothelioma.

Multimedia manual of cardiothoracic surgery : MMCTS, 2020:.

Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a disease of the pleural cavity that is strongly associated with asbestos exposure. In most cases it carries a poor prognosis. Patients often present with respiratory symptoms, caused by pleural effusion. Treatment, preferably in a multimodal setting, cannot provide cure, but can prolong survival and improve quality of life in selected cases. Prior to eventual cytoreductive surgery, surgical intervention can provide histopathological proof of disease, and symptoms can be controlled with talc pleurodesis. We present the case of a 67-year-old patient with malignant pleural mesothelioma who underwent video-assisted thoracoscopic biopsy and talc pleurodesis, and demonstrate our technique with a video tutorial showing how we performed the procedure.

RevDate: 2020-07-07

Fazzo L, Cernigliaro A, De Santis M, et al (2020)

Occupational cohort study of asbestos-cement workers in a contaminated site in Sicily (Italy).

Epidemiologia e prevenzione, 44(2-3):137-144.

OBJECTIVES: to analyse the asbestos-related diseases risk among the former workers of Sacelit asbestos-cement plant, operating in San Filippo del Mela (Sicily: 1958- 1993).

DESIGN: cohort study.

SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: 228 subjects were employed in Sacelit from 1958 to 1993. Due to the available observation periods, the analyses of the different outcomes were performed for the subjects alive at the beginning of the respective follow up periods: mortality (1986-2018) was analysed for 204 subjects (177 men, 27 women), hospitalization (2001-2016) for 164 workers (139 men, 25 women) and the incidence of mesothelioma (1998-2016) was estimated for 178 subjects (153 men, 25 women).

MAIN OUTCOMES MEASURES: mortality (Standardized Mortality Ratio: SMR) and hospitalization (Standardized Hospitalization Ratio: SHR) from specific diseases were analysed. Incidence (Standardized Incidence Ratio: SIR) of mesothelioma cases was detected, also. SMR (1986-2014), SHR (2001-2016) and SIR (1998-2016), with 95% Confidence Intervals, were computed with respect to the regional rates, with STATA11.

RESULTS: in the men cohort, mortality from lung (17 cases, SMR 2.83) and pleural cancers (5 cases, SMR 30) and from asbestosis (15 cases, SMR 1,930) was in excess. The risk of hospitalization was in excess, in both genders, from lung cancer (men: 6 cases, SHR 4.1; women: 2 cases, SHR 8.6) and asbestosis (men: 17 cases, SHR 1,304; women: 6 cases, SHR 2,455). The incidence of mesothelioma was in excess in men (5 cases, SIR 23.9); no female cases of mesothelioma were observed.

CONCLUSIONS: a high occurrence of asbestos-related diseases in the cohort, particularly among men, was observed. The excess of hospitalization from asbestosis and lung cancer was highlighted also in women. The prosecution of the on-going health surveillance plan is particularly appropriated.

RevDate: 2020-07-06

Mezei G, Chang ET, Mowat FS, et al (2020)

Comments on a recent case-control study of malignant mesothelioma of the pericardium and the tunica vaginalis testis.

As the first case-control study of malignant mesothelioma of the pericardium and the tunica vaginalis testis (mTVT), the paper by Marinaccio et al (1) is potentially an important epidemiologic contribution. A careful review of the paper, however, raises a number of methodological issues. Any case-control study can be viewed as being nested within a conceptual cohort, with controls being sampled from the at-risk cohort as cases arise over time. This view of case-control studies leads to the concept of incidence-density sampling of controls (eg, 2, 3). For Marinaccio et al (1) this would mean that, as cases were registered over the study period, each would be matched to an individual control or set of controls of the same gender, age, and region of the country (since asbestos exposure varies by time and region [4]). For example, if a case were 50 years old in 1995, then any matched control should be close to age 50 in 1995 and of the same gender and from the same region as the case. Matching for age in this fashion automatically results in matching for year of birth, which is essential in this context because birth-cohort effects are determinants of asbestos exposure and mesothelioma incidence (eg, 5-8). If Marinaccio et al (1) used this scheme for age-matching, one would expect to see similar distributions of cases (table 1) and controls (table S3 in the supplemental material) by period of birth. Among males, however, the distributions of mesothelioma cases (whether pericardial or mTVT) and controls by period of birth are clearly different (P<0.001). Among females, the distributions of cases of pericardial mesothelioma and controls by birth year are less dissimilar (P≈0.05). Thus, the female cases of pericardial mesothelioma are better matched to controls on year of birth than are male cases of either mTVT or pericardial mesothelioma. We note also that the distributions of male and female controls by year of birth are distinctly different (P<0.002), whereas the birth-year distributions of cases of mesothelioma by site and gender are not (P≈0.8). In the Marinaccio et al (1) sensitivity analysis restricted to subjects born before 1950, the distributions of cases and controls by period of birth remain significantly different. Therefore, based on the reported evidence, cases and controls were not matched on birth cohort, thereby possibly biasing the results. Similarly, bias may result from the lack of matching on geographic region; while cases were registered from across Italy, controls were selected from only six regions. Although a sensitivity analysis restricted cases and controls to those from only the six regions, a comparison of tables S1 and S3 indicates that the regional distribution of controls is different from that of person-time observed; that is, the controls do not appear to be representative of the underlying population at risk by region. The second major issue of concern has to do with ascertainment of asbestos exposure. Information on exposure for the cases was presumably obtained at the time of registration. The two sets of controls, obtained from previously unpublished case-control studies, were interviewed during 2014-2015 and 2014-2016; that is, many years after the exposure for most cases was ascertained (1993-2015). Few other details of the control groups are provided, except that participation by one set of controls was <50%, raising additional concerns about selection bias. For details on the second set of controls, Marinaccio et al (1) reference a paper by Brandi et al (9). On review of that paper, however, we found no description of the control group, only references to three earlier papers. Marinaccio et al (1) present analyses only with both sets of controls combined; to evaluate potential sources of bias from the use of different sets of controls, they should also report results using each set of controls separately. The authors also did not detail their methods of exposure classification. For example, what does probable or possible exposure mean? The authors should at least present separate analyses of definite occupational exposure. Eighty cases of mTVT were registered, but only 68 were included in the analyses. Information on the 12 omitted cases (eg, age, year of birth, and region) would be helpful. Marinaccio et al (1) did not provide clear information on what occupations and/or industries they considered as exposed to asbestos. In an earlier study, Marinaccio et al (10) remarked on the absence of pericardial mesothelioma and mTVT in industries with the highest exposures to asbestos, saying, "[t]he absence of exposures in the shipbuilding, railway and asbestos-cement industries … for all the 67 pericardial and testicular cases is noteworthy but not easy to interpret." By contrast, Marinaccio et al (1) stated, "[t]he economic sectors more frequently associated with asbestos exposure were construction, steel mills, metal-working industry, textile industry and agriculture." The possibility of exposure in the "agriculture economic sector" was not mentioned in Marinaccio et al (10) and appears not to have been considered in previous epidemiologic studies in Italy. In general, epidemiologic studies indicate that farmers and agricultural workers are not at increased risk of developing mesothelioma (eg, 11-17). The fact that few, if any, cases of mTVT and pericardial mesothelioma occurred in industries traditionally associated with high asbestos exposure raises the possibility that the results of Marinaccio et al (1) are attributable to deficiencies in study design, very possibly bias in the selection of controls, and deficiencies in exposure assessment and classification as described above, leading to a spurious association of occupational exposure with mTVT and male pericardial mesothelioma. Conflict of interest This research has received no outside funding. All authors are employees of Exponent, Inc., an international scientific and consulting company. All authors have worked as both consulting and testifying experts in litigation matters related to asbestos exposure and asbestos-related disease. References 1. Marinaccio A, Consonni D, Mensi C, Mirabelli D, Migliore E, Magnani C et al.; ReNaM Working Group. Association between asbestos exposure and pericardial and tunica vaginalis testis malignant mesothelioma: a case-control study and epidemiological remarks. Scand J Work Environ Health - online first. https://doi.org/10.5271/sjweh.3895. 2. Rothman KJ, Greenland S, Lash TL. Modern Epidemiology. 2008; Philadelphia: Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 3. Richardson DB. An incidence density sampling program for nested case-control analyses. Occup Environ Med 2004 Dec;61(12):e59. https://doi.org/10.1136/oem.2004.014472. 4. Marinaccio A, Binazzi A, Marzio DD, Scarselli A, Verardo M, Mirabelli D et al.; ReNaM Working Group. Pleural malignant mesothelioma epidemic: incidence, modalities of asbestos exposure and occupations involved from the Italian National Register. Int J Cancer 2012 May;130(9):2146-54. https://doi.org/10.1002/ijc.26229. 5. La Vecchia C, Decarli A, Peto J, Levi F, Tomei F, Negri E. An age, period and cohort analysis of pleural cancer mortality in Europe. Eur J Cancer Prev 2000 Jun;9(3):179-84. https://doi.org/10.1097/00008469-200006000-00005. 6. Price B, Ware A. Mesothelioma trends in the United States: an update based on Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program data for 1973 through 2003. Am J Epidemiol 2004 Jan;159(2):107-12. https://doi.org/10.1093/aje/kwh025. 7. Moolgavkar SH, Meza R, Turim J. Pleural and peritoneal mesotheliomas in SEER: age effects and temporal trends, 1973-2005. Cancer Causes Control 2009 Aug;20(6):935-44. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10552-009-9328-9. 8. Moolgavkar SH, Chang ET, Mezei G, Mowat FS. Chapter 3. Epidemiology of mesothelioma. In Testa JR. Asbestos and mesothelioma; 2017. pp. 43-72. Cham, Switzerland: Springer International Publishing. 9. Brandi G, Di Girolamo S, Farioli A, de Rosa F, Curti S, Pinna AD et al. Asbestos: a hidden player behind the cholangiocarcinoma increase? Findings from a case-control analysis. Cancer Causes Control 2013 May;24(5):911-8. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10552-013-0167-3. 10. Marinaccio A, Binazzi A, Di Marzio D, Scarselli A, Verardo M, Mirabelli D et al. Incidence of extrapleural malignant mesothelioma and asbestos exposure, from the Italian national register. Occup Environ Med 2010 Nov;67(11):760-5. https://doi.org/10.1136/oem.2009.051466. 11. Teschke K, Morgan MS, Checkoway H, Franklin G, Spinelli JJ, van Belle G et al. Mesothelioma surveillance to locate sources of exposure to asbestos. Can J Public Health 1997 May-Jun;88(3):163-8. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF03403881. 12. Bouchardy C, Schüler G, Minder C, Hotz P, Bousquet A, Levi F et al. Cancer risk by occupation and socioeconomic group among men--a study by the Association of Swiss Cancer Registries. Scand J Work Environ Health 2002;28(1 Suppl 1):1-88. 13. Hemminki K, Li X. Time trends and occupational risk factors for pleural mesothelioma in Sweden. J Occup Environ Med 2003a Apr;45(4):456-61. https://doi.org/10.1097/01.jom.0000058341.05741.7e. 14. Hemminki K, Li X. Time trends and occupational risk factors for peritoneal mesothelioma in Sweden. J Occup Environ Med 2003b Apr;45(4):451-5. https://doi.org/10.1097/01.jom.0000052960.59271.d4. 15. Pukkala E, Martinsen JI, Lynge E, Gunnarsdottir HK, Sparén P, Tryggvadottir L et al. Occupation and cancer - follow-up of 15 million people in five Nordic countries. Acta Oncol 2009;48(5):646-790. https://doi.org/10.1080/02841860902913546. 16. Rolland P, Gramond C, Berron H, Ducamp S, Imbernon E, Goldberg M et al. Mesotheliome pleural: Professions et secteurs d'activite a risque chez les hommes [Pleural mesothelioma: Professions and occupational areas at risk among humans]. 2005; Institut de Veille Sanitaire, Departement Sante Travai, Saint-Maurice, France. 17. Rolland P, Gramond C, Lacourt A, Astoul P, Chamming's S, Ducamp S et al. PNSM Study Group. Occupations and industries in France at high risk for pleural mesothelioma: A population-based case-control study (1998-2002). Am J Ind Med 2010 Dec;53(12):1207-19. https://doi.org/10.1002/ajim.20895.

RevDate: 2020-07-06

Paajanen J, Laaksonen S, Ilonen I, et al (2020)

Clinical Features in Patients With Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma With 5-Year Survival and Evaluation of Original Diagnoses.

Clinical lung cancer pii:S1525-7304(20)30160-1 [Epub ahead of print].

INTRODUCTION: Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a fatal malignancy strongly associated with previous asbestos exposure. Overall survival remains dismal, partly owing to poor response to available treatment. The aims of this study were to evaluate diagnostic accuracy in a group of patients with MPM with an unusually long survival time and to assess the factors related to this prolonged survival.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Forty-three patients with overall survival exceeding 5 years were accepted to the long-term survivor (LTS) group, and these patients were compared with 84 patients with epithelial MPM. Data were collected from various national registries and electronic medical records. In addition, all available histopathologic diagnostic samples and computed tomography studies were re-evaluated by experienced specialists.

RESULTS: Our study showed a good diagnostic accuracy, with only 1 (0.5%) patient having an incorrect MPM diagnosis. Two (0.9%) localized malignant mesotheliomas and 2 (0.9%) well-differentiated papillary mesotheliomas were also found. LTS patients were younger, more frequently female, had a better performance status at time of diagnosis, and had less evidence of prior asbestos exposure. In multivariate analysis, we showed tumor size, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status, and first-line treatment (both surgery and chemotherapy) to be associated with survival time.

CONCLUSION: We confirmed the diagnosis of MPM in an overwhelming majority of patients in the LTS group. An epithelial subtype of MPM behaving clinically more indolently seems to exist, but further tumor and genetic characterization is needed. The prolonged survival time is most likely explained by a combination of tumor-, patient-, and treatment-related factors.

RevDate: 2020-10-05

Xu T, Hu J, Zhang X, et al (2020)

A Case of Localized Malignant Peritoneal Mesothelioma Evaluated by 18F-FDG PET/CT.

Clinical nuclear medicine, 45(11):890-891.

Localized malignant mesothelioma is rare. The prognosis is generally more favorable for this condition than for diffuse malignant mesothelioma. An elderly woman recently complained of abdominal pain, fever, and weight loss. She had no history of asbestos exposure. Her serum CEA level was elevated. Plain CT revealed a mass under the left diaphragm, with liquefaction and necrosis. A contrast-enhanced scan showed circular enhancement of the mass. A subsequent biopsy of the mass revealed a poorly differentiated carcinoma. PET/CT showed a significant FDG-avid subphrenic mass without any indications of metastasis. Postoperative pathological and immunohistochemical examination confirmed a case of malignant mesothelioma.

RevDate: 2020-08-03

Boice JD, Cohen SS, Mumma MT, et al (2020)

Mortality among U.S. military participants at eight aboveground nuclear weapons test series.

International journal of radiation biology [Epub ahead of print].

BACKGROUND: Approximately 235,000 military personnel participated at one of 230 U.S. atmospheric nuclear weapons tests from 1945 through 1962. At the Nevada Test Site (NTS), the atomic veterans participated in military maneuvers, observed nuclear weapons tests, or provided technical support. At the Pacific Proving Ground (PPG), they served aboard ships or were stationed on islands during or after nuclear weapons tests.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Participants at seven test series, previously studied with high-quality dosimetry and personnel records, and the first test at TRINITY formed the cohort of 114,270 male military participants traced for vital status from 1945 through 2010. Dose reconstructions were based on Nuclear Test Personnel Review records, Department of Defense. Standardized mortality ratios (SMR) and Cox and Poisson regression models were used in the analysis.

RESULTS: Most atomic veterans were enlisted men, served in the Navy at the PPG, and were born before 1930. Vital status was determined for 96.8% of the veterans; 60% had died. Enlisted men had significantly high all-causes mortality SMR (1.06); officers had significantly low all-causes mortality SMR (0.71). The pattern of risk over time showed a diminution of the 'healthy soldier effect': the all-causes mortality SMR after 50 years of follow-up was 1.00. The healthy soldier effect for all cancers also diminished over time. The all-cancer SMR was significantly high after 50 years (SMR 1.10) primarily from smoking-related cancers, attributed in part to the availability of cigarettes in military rations. The highest SMR was for mesothelioma (SMR 1.56) which was correlated with asbestos exposure in naval ships. Prostate cancer was significantly high (SMR 1.13). Ischemic heart disease was significantly low (SMR 0.84). Estimated mean doses varied by organ were low; e.g., the mean red bone marrow dose was 6 mGy (maximum 108 mGy). Internal cohort dose-response analyses provided no evidence for increasing trends with radiation dose for leukemia (excluding chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL)) [ERR (95% CI) per 100 mGy -0.37 (-1.08, 0.33); n = 710], CLL, myelodysplastic syndrome, multiple myeloma, ischemic heart disease, or cancers of the lung, prostate, breast, and brain.

CONCLUSION: No statistically significant radiation associations were observed among 114,270 nuclear weapons test participants followed for up to 65 years. The 95% confidence limits were narrow and excluded mortality risks per unit dose that are two to four times higher than those reported in other investigations. Significantly elevated SMRs were seen for mesothelioma and asbestosis, attributed to asbestos exposure aboard ships.

RevDate: 2020-09-17

Marinaccio A, Gariazzo C, Di Marzio D, et al (2020)

Predictors of filing claims and receiving compensation in malignant mesothelioma patients.

Health policy (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 124(9):1032-1040.

Although the predominant occupation origin of mesothelioma is well known, determinant factors involved in filing compensation are scarcely investigated. A linkage between incident mesothelioma cases collected by Italian mesothelioma register (ReNaM) and compensation claims and assignment by Italian national insurance Institute (INAIL) has been conducted for cases diagnosed in the period 2010-2015 and occupational exposure to asbestos. Logistic regression models and decision tree models have been used to identify demographic, diagnostic and anamnestic factors significant for filing and receiving compensation. We have included in the analyses 5019 mesothelioma cases, and among them, 3321 (66.2 %) were found in INAIL archives as mesothelioma cases who fil claims for compensation. The modalities of asbestos exposure, sector of working activities and job type are crucial factors. Furthermore, gender, age at diagnosis, area of residence have been found to be significant predictors of probability to fil claims. Relative risks to fil claims were obtained for the above determinants and conditions to maximize the probability to obtain compensation identified. Our findings demonstrate that there is a need to enforce policies for improving awareness of the occupational origin for mesothelioma cases. Stakeholders, occupational health and safety institutions can play an important role for improving the sensitization regarding the rights of compensation benefits, ensuring the equity and the effectiveness of insurance, welfare and public health systems.

RevDate: 2020-07-13

Sherborne V, Seymour J, Taylor B, et al (2020)

What are the psychological effects of mesothelioma on patients and their carers? A scoping review.

Psycho-oncology [Epub ahead of print].

OBJECTIVE: Despite recent advances in research, malignant mesothelioma remains an incurable and devastating disease, typically bringing shock and emotional distress to patients and carers. Little research has addressed the psychological impact on either group. This scoping review examines the current state of evidence on the psychological effects of mesothelioma on patients and carers, and identifies areas for further research.

METHODS: We searched PubMed, PsychINFO, CINAHL, the Cochrane Library and Web of Science for English-language peer-reviewed research articles published 1981 to 2019 reporting studies focussing on the psychological effects of mesothelioma on patients and carers. Following data extraction and quality appraisal, reflexive thematic analysis was used to identify themes.

RESULTS: Seventeen articles met the inclusion criteria. Carers' experiences were generally amalgamated with patients'. Three themes were developed. The Passing of Time included the importance of timing of interventions; delays in the medical journey; awareness of different time-phases in mesothelioma; and uncertainty/certainty. Dealing with Difficult Feelings reflected ubiquitous negative emotions, feelings about identity and states of being and associated coping strategies. Craving Good Communication covered issues related to sharing of information and to positive/negative aspects of communication.

CONCLUSIONS: Though limited, the evidence indicates that mesothelioma, with its high symptom-burden, incurability, rarity and asbestos-related causation, leads to complex and inter-relating psychological effects on patients and carers. These effects are both negative and positive. The sparse literature gives a partial picture and demonstrates an urgent need for more nuanced research. Studies exploring the experiences of specific groups are recommended, with particular attention required to carers.


RJR Experience and Expertise


Robbins holds BS, MS, and PhD degrees in the life sciences. He served as a tenured faculty member in the Zoology and Biological Science departments at Michigan State University. He is currently exploring the intersection between genomics, microbial ecology, and biodiversity — an area that promises to transform our understanding of the biosphere.


Robbins has extensive experience in college-level education: At MSU he taught introductory biology, genetics, and population genetics. At JHU, he was an instructor for a special course on biological database design. At FHCRC, he team-taught a graduate-level course on the history of genetics. At Bellevue College he taught medical informatics.


Robbins has been involved in science administration at both the federal and the institutional levels. At NSF he was a program officer for database activities in the life sciences, at DOE he was a program officer for information infrastructure in the human genome project. At the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, he served as a vice president for fifteen years.


Robbins has been involved with information technology since writing his first Fortran program as a college student. At NSF he was the first program officer for database activities in the life sciences. At JHU he held an appointment in the CS department and served as director of the informatics core for the Genome Data Base. At the FHCRC he was VP for Information Technology.


While still at Michigan State, Robbins started his first publishing venture, founding a small company that addressed the short-run publishing needs of instructors in very large undergraduate classes. For more than 20 years, Robbins has been operating The Electronic Scholarly Publishing Project, a web site dedicated to the digital publishing of critical works in science, especially classical genetics.


Robbins is well-known for his speaking abilities and is often called upon to provide keynote or plenary addresses at international meetings. For example, in July, 2012, he gave a well-received keynote address at the Global Biodiversity Informatics Congress, sponsored by GBIF and held in Copenhagen. The slides from that talk can be seen HERE.


Robbins is a skilled meeting facilitator. He prefers a participatory approach, with part of the meeting involving dynamic breakout groups, created by the participants in real time: (1) individuals propose breakout groups; (2) everyone signs up for one (or more) groups; (3) the groups with the most interested parties then meet, with reports from each group presented and discussed in a subsequent plenary session.


Robbins has been engaged with photography and design since the 1960s, when he worked for a professional photography laboratory. He now prefers digital photography and tools for their precision and reproducibility. He designed his first web site more than 20 years ago and he personally designed and implemented this web site. He engages in graphic design as a hobby.

963 Red Tail Lane
Bellingham, WA 98226


E-mail: RJR8222@gmail.com

Collection of publications by R J Robbins

Reprints and preprints of publications, slide presentations, instructional materials, and data compilations written or prepared by Robert Robbins. Most papers deal with computational biology, genome informatics, using information technology to support biomedical research, and related matters.

Research Gate page for R J Robbins

ResearchGate is a social networking site for scientists and researchers to share papers, ask and answer questions, and find collaborators. According to a study by Nature and an article in Times Higher Education , it is the largest academic social network in terms of active users.

Curriculum Vitae for R J Robbins

short personal version

Curriculum Vitae for R J Robbins

long standard version

RJR Picks from Around the Web (updated 11 MAY 2018 )