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What are clinical trials and why should I participate?

Clinical research studies, or clinical trials, are studies completed with the help of human volunteers. These trials help determine the benefits and effectiveness of specific treatments for medical conditions. Carefully monitored clinical trials are highly effective, and also safe, in determining treatments that improve human health. Patients can benefit from the immediate access to novel treatments, while contributing to the medical communities' knowledge.


Mesothelioma Clinical Trials

A mesothelioma diagnosis is a serious one, but it is not one without hope. There are a variety of treatments available, and a number of ongoing clinical trails.

Trial Status: we do our best to keep the current status (closed, currently recruiting, upcoming) of each clinical trial up-to-date. Several clinical trials are listed at as "currently recruiting" despite the estimated completion date having been long past. The contact for a particular clinical trial is your best bet to discover if a particular clinical trial is still open and recruiting.

Glossary: To help you as you read through these clinical trials, we have glossary of terms and their definitions. Words underlined with a dashed line are part of the glossary; to see their definition, simply click on the word.

Clinical Trials.

Phase II Study of Six Hours Low Dose Gemcitabine Plus Cisplatin in the Treatment for Advanced Pleural Mesothelioma

Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare disease, but with a very high mortality. MPM is frequently found in advanced stages. The standard treatment in advanced pleural mesothelioma is cisplatin-based chemotherapy combined with pemetrexed/raltitrexed (phase III studies showed its benefit in response and overall survival compared with cisplatin alone). There are other active drugs such as liposomal doxorubicin and gemcitabine. Unfortunately, cost is an important factor to consider in our population and standard treatments are very expensive. Gemcitabine 250 mg infused over 6 hrs in combination with cisplatin, compared to the standard administration of gemcitabine 1250 mg infusion of 30 minutes in NSCLC, combined with cisplatin showed 75 mg shown in a study to be equally effective in treating cancer non-small cell lung. A phase II study using this strategy for advanced MPM has shown promising results. Gemcitabine administered in low dose in a six hour infusion may reduce cost of treatment without altering the effectiveness.

Please note: the estimated primary completion date for this study of February, 2014 has passed. However, it is not listed as closed by Inquire with the study contacts (view full clinical tiral post) to determine if they are still accepting participants or for more information about the treatment protocol.

Cisplatin, Pemetrexed, and Imatinib Mesylate in Malignant Mesothelioma

Determine the highest tolerable dose of drug combination (cisplatin, pemetrexed [Alimta®], and imatinib mesylate [Gleevec®]) that can be given to patients with unresectable or metastatic malignant mesothelioma.

Placebo Controlled Study of VS-6063 in Subjects With Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma (COMMAND)

Purpose: This study is a Phase 2, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter study of defactinib (VS-6063) in subjects with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) who have not progressed (confirmed partial response or stable disease) following ≥ 4 cycles of treatment with pemetrexed/cisplatin or pemetrexed/carboplatin. Prior to entry and randomization to the study, each subject must have tumor Merlin status(high or low) established by immunohistochemistry performed at a central laboratory. Subjects will be randomized in a 1:1 ratio to receive oral VS-6063 400 mg twice per day, or matched placebo. Randomization will be stratified by tumor Merlin status (high versus low). Progression will be assessed both locally and by central review using the Response Evaluation Criteria In Solid Tumors (RECIST) Version 1.1. Subjects will continue to receive treatment until disease progression or other discontinuation criteria are met. Following documentation of nonfatal disease progression, all subjects will be followed for overall survival by telephone contact every 2 months until end of life or the close of the study.

Do Your Genes Put You at a Higher Risk of Developing Mesothelioma

Purpose: The purpose of this research study is to investigate the possibility that a person’s genes put a person at a higher risk of developing mesothelioma. The investigators will examine genes from DNA (genetic material) isolated from blood. This study will also examine the impact of environmental and work exposures and family history of common cancers on the development of mesothelioma. The genetic markers in this study will basically identify how a person’s body processes frequently encountered environmental pollutants and will not tell about chromosomes, specific diseases, or other potential health problems.

Tissue Procurement and Natural History Study of Patients with Malignant Mesothelioma

Purpose: Malignant mesothelioma is a malignancy arising from the mesothelial cells of the pleura, peritoneum, pericardium, or tunica vaginalis.
mesothelioma accounts for 0.10% of deaths annually in the United States. Malignant pleural mesothelioma is the most common of these, comprising of 80% of the cases with an annual incidence of about 2,500 in the United States.
The median survival from diagnosis of pleural mesothelioma is approximately 12 months. The majority of patients present with stage III or IV disease with 85-90% of patients considered unresectable at diagnosis.
peritoneal mesothelioma has a better prognosis than pleural mesothelioma; nevertheless, patients undergoing therapy for peritoneal mesothelioma have few well-studied treatment options due in large part to the rarity of the disease.

Adjuvant Tumor Lysate Vaccine and Iscomatrix With or Without Metronomic Oral Cyclophosphamide and Celecoxib in Patients With Malignancies Involving Lungs, Esophagus, Pleura, or Mediastinum

Purpose: During recent years, cancer-testis (CT) antigens (CTA), particularly those encoded by genes on the X chromosome (CT-X genes), have emerged as attractive targets for cancer immunotherapy. Whereas malignancies of diverse histologies express a variety of CTAs, immune responses to these proteins appear uncommon in cancer patients, possibly due to low-level, heterogeneous antigen expression, as well as immunosuppressive regulatory T cells present within tumor sites and systemic circulation of these individuals. Conceivably, vaccination of cancer patients with tumor cells expressing high levels of CTAs in combination with regimens that deplete or inhibit T regulatory cells will induce broad immunity to these antigens. In order to examine this issue, patients with primary lung and esophageal cancers, pleural mesotheliomas, thoracic sarcomas, thymic neoplasms and mediastinal germ cell tumors, as well as sarcomas, melanomas, germ cell tumors, or epithelial malignancies metastatic to lungs, pleura or mediastinum with no evidence of disease (NED) or minimal residual disease (MRD) following standard multidisciplinary therapy will be vaccinated with H1299 tumor cell lysates with Iscomatrix adjuvant. Vaccines will be administered with or without metronomic oral cyclophosphamide (50 mg PO BID x 7d q 14d), and celecoxib (400 mg PO BID). Serologic responses to a variety of recombinant CTAs as well as immunologic responses to autologous tumor or epigenetically modified autologous EBVtransformed lymphocytes will be assessed before and after a six month vaccination period.

Multicentre Study Comparing Indwelling Pleural Catheter With Talc Pleurodesis for Malignant Pleural Effusion Management

Purpose: Malignant pleural effusion (MPE) accounts for 50% of all pleural effusions and affects about 300,000 patients annually (UK and USA). Lung and breast cancers account for majority of malignant pleural effusions; 1 in 3 breast cancer, 1 in 4 lung cancer as well as > 90% of patients with mesothelioma develop pleural effusions. Breathlessness from MPE is disabling and impairs quality of life. Median survival ranges between 4-6 months. Although thoracentesis provides effective symptom relief, most effusions recur and pleurodesis is the standard of care. Pleurodesis can be performed via chest tube or applied during pleuroscopy, and talc is the most effective agent. For successful pleurodesis to occur the underlying lung must expand after fluid drainage and trapped lung due to metastatic disease occurs up to 30%. Symptomatic patients require hospitalization for these procedures which are likely to fail if trapped lungs are encountered, and pose significant burden to health services. Tunneled indwelling pleural catheter (IPC) is emerging as a viable alternative which provides access to the pleural space for fluid drainage when breathlessness arise. IPC can be performed at ambulatory setting without hospital admission. Case series have demonstrated long-term safety of IPC even in patients undergoing chemotherapy with acceptable complication rates. By keeping the pleural cavity free of fluid, IPC has led to spontaneous pleurodesis in 50% of patients, which allows its removal. Presently IPC is indicated for trapped lung or when talc pleurodesis has failed. A randomised comparative trial with talc pleurodesis is necessary to determine role of IPC as first-line therapy of MPE, if IPC leads to reduction in hospitalizations, adverse events and healthcare costs, and if it improves quality of life. The multicenter trial randomizes symptomatic patients 1:1 to IPC or talc pleurodesis, and endpoints include hospitalization days till death or end of study, adverse events, quality of life, and healthcare costs.

Arm: Experimental: Indwelling Pleural catheter
Day-case IPC insertion. Attendance d10 for drainage, stitch removal and education in catheter care.
Device: Indwelling Pleural catheter
Arm: Active Comparator: Talc Pleurodesis
Hospital admission for chest drain insertion and suction if needed, plus talc pleurodesis by slurry or poudrage if >75% of visceral and parietal pleura in direct contact on chest x-ray.
Procedure: Talc Pleurodesis

MARS 2: A Feasibility Study Comparing (Extended) Pleurectomy Decortication Versus no Pleurectomy Decortication in Patients With Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma (MARS2)

Purpose: mesothelioma is a cancer of the thin membrane that lines the chest and abdomen. Around 2300 people in the UK are diagnosed with mesothelioma each year and the average survival is approximately 17 months. Exposure to asbestos is the most common cause although the cancer does not usually become apparent until 30-40 years after exposure. Anti-cancer drugs (chemotherapy) are usually given to help treat mesothelioma and sometimes lung-sparing surgery (pleurectomy decortication) surgery is undertaken. However, it is not known if this surgery, in addition to chemotherapy, can increase survival and improve the quality of life for patients. The aim of the MARS2 study is to determine if it is feasible to enrol patients with mesothelioma into a study randomising them to chemotherapy only or chemotherapy and lung-sparing surgery. Patients will be followed up regularly at their usual clinic visits for to 5 years. Patients will be asked to complete a Quality of Life Questionnaire at these visits. tissue samples will be taken at the time of diagnosis and at surgery (if they are randomised to surgery) for mesothelioma research central storage and blood samples will be taken at the clinic visits up to 12 months for mesothelioma research central storage. If we can show the feasibility of recruitment we will apply to continue the study to include more patients in order to determine if lung-sparing surgery improves survival and quality of life for mesothelioma patients.

Ph 1 Study in Subjects With Tumors Requiring Arginine to Assess ADI-PEG 20 With Pemetrexed and Cisplatin (TRAP)

Purpose: A study of ADI-PEG 20 (pegylated arginine deiminase), an arginine degrading enzyme in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) and non-squamous non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

Window of Opportunity Study of VS-6063 (Defactinib) in Participants With Surgical Resectable Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

Purpose: This is an open label neoadjuvant (treatment with VS-6063 prior to mesothelioma surgery) study in subjects with malignant pleural mesothelioma who are eligible for surgery. Subjects will receive VS-6063 (defactinib) for 12 days. Pre- and post-treatment biopsies and blood samples will be collected. The purpose of this study is to assess biomarker responses from tumor tissue. The safety, pharmacokinetics, and tumor response rate to VS-6063 (defactinib) will be also be assessed.

Arms: Experimental: VS-6063 (defactinib)
Administered orally (BID) for 12 days (+/- 2 days)
Assigned Interventions
Drug: VS-6063
Other Name: defactinib

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Last Updated: November 25, 2013. 09:27:54 pm.