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Tumori. 2016 Jan-Feb;102(1):18-30. doi: 10.5301/tj.5000436. Epub 2015 Oct 14.

Systemic approach to malignant pleural mesothelioma: what news of chemotherapy, targeted agents and immunotherapy?

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Department of Medical Oncology, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan - Italy.
Department of Preventive and Predictive Medicine, Fondazione IRCSS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan - Italy.
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan - Italy.
Division of Thoracic Surgery, Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori, Milan - Italy.


Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a rare cancer with a cause-effect relationship to asbestos exposure. The prognosis is poor and chemotherapy seems the best treatment option. In the last two decades a deeper understanding of mesothelioma carcinogenesis and invasiveness mechanisms has prompted research efforts to test new agents in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma, but the results have been modest. Attractive preclinical data disappointed in subsequent experimental phases. Other promising agents failed to improve patient outcomes due to high toxicity. Interesting suggestions have come from preliminary data on immunotherapy. Several trials are ongoing and the results are eagerly awaited. The aim of this review is to discuss the most recent news on systemic therapy for advanced malignant pleural mesothelioma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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