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Mesothelioma Clinical Studies

There are a number of clinical studies on going which aim to reduce the progression of mesothelioma. The details of these clinical trials are detailed below.


HSV1716 is a type of virus that infects cancer cells and kills them. Laboratory tests have shown that HSV1716 can infiltrate into the mesothelioma cells and kill them.

This clinical study has been carried out in Sheffield. It commenced on 15.10.2012 and is due to finish on 31.12.2013.

The side effects of this treatment may include flu like symptoms, inflammation of the lining of the lung, lung infection and infection where the tube enters the chest.  The full results of this treatment will not be know until the conclusion of the trial.

Ganetesip with pemetrexed and cisplatin for pleural mesothelioma

This trial, which is being carried out in Leicester, looks at the use of the drug ganetesip alongside chemotherapy for patients with mesothelioma of the pleura.

Ganetesip is a type of biological therapy known as heat shock protein 90 inhibitor. The purpose of this treatment is to stop signals that cancer cells use to divide and grow. It is intended that this drug will be used alongside pemetrexed and cisplation which are two chemotherapy drugs.

The trial commenced on 27.08.2013 and will finish on 31.01.2015. The aim of the trial is to find the best dose of ganetesip to give alongside pemetrexed and cisplation and assess how the combination works to beat pleural mesothelioma.

The most common side effects of the drugs used in this trial include feeling or being sick, diarrhoea or constipation, a drop in red blood cells, soreness of the mouth, numbness or tingling of the hands or feet, fatigue, hair loss, hearing and sight deterioration, loss of appetite and skin change. It is noted however that many of these side effects are common from the chemotherapy drugs pemetrexed and cisplation which are common forms of treatment and therefore the addition of the third drug carried the same side effects as the common form of treatment previously used.


This study, sponsored by Barts & The London NHS Trust, examined whether the arginine depleting drug, ADI-PEG 20 is effective when used as targeted treatment in patients with ASS negative malignant mesothelioma. The trial commenced in January 2011 and is in its second stage. The treatment is administered by way of injection. The primary outcome of the trial is to provide a progression free survival of up to 18 months after diagnosis. The estimated completion date for the trial is January 2014.

Trovax with premetrexed and cisplatin for pleural mesothelioma (SKOPOS)

This trial, which is being carried out in Cardiff, looks at the use of a vaccine called TroVax alongside chemotherapy for pleural mesothelioma. TroVax works by helping the immune system recognise and attack cancer cells. Mesothelioma carries a protein called 5T4 and researchers want to find out whether TroVax will enable the immune system to identify this protein and kill it off.

The aim of the trial is to see if this drug used alongside chemotherapy is more effective than chemotherapy alone. The side effects will include the usual side effects of chemotherapy such as vomiting, kidney damage, loss of appetite etc .and in addition to this there are further possible side effects from the use of TroVax such as pain, itching or swelling at the injection site, a change in temperature (fever or chills) and flu like symptoms.

The study commenced on 19.12.2012 and is due to commence on 19.12.2013.

Pain control post operative treatment to the lung – ErLaPara Study

Surgeons often carry out a VATs procedure on patients suffering from mesothelioma. This can be a painful procedure. In order to numb the pain experienced by the patient a local anaesthetic is administered after the procedure is completed. However the pain experienced by the patient at the site of the surgery is still significant. This study looks at administering the anaesthetic shortly after the commencement of the procedure to determine to what degree this will relieve the after surgery pain experienced. The trial is taking place in Bristol and commenced on 1 January 2013. The results should be available in January 2014.

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