Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Asbestos cancer breakthrough

14.11.2003


First-ever blood test for mesothelioma being developed



Researchers at the Pacific Northwest Research Institute (PNRI) have reported the development of a blood test for mesothelioma, a highly aggressive lung cancer caused by asbestos exposure.

A PNRI team led by Dr. Ingegerd Hellstrom, and an Australian team, led by Dr. Bruce Robinson, of the University of Western Australia, conducted the research, which appears in the November 15th issue of Lancet. The new test promises a simple technique for diagnosing and monitoring mesothelioma early in its progress, when therapy is more likely to be successful. Fujirebio Diagnostics, Inc. (FDI) of Malvern, PA, a leading oncology diagnostic company, has acquired an exclusive license from PNRI to develop a commercial test for worldwide distribution.


According to Hellstrom, mesothelioma cells release distinctive molecular markers, SMR (soluble mesothelin-related proteins), into the blood stream. Hellstrom and her colleagues have identified this group of markers and have developed a test to detect them with great specificity.

In blood samples gathered from 273 individuals, researchers found that 84% of those with mesothelioma exhibited high levels of SMR. Only 1.9% of those with other forms of cancer or lung disease had any increased SMR, and patients who were healthy and had not been exposed to asbestos showed no biomarker increase.

"This is a very important breakthrough in the diagnosis and treatment of mesothelioma," Hellstrom explains. "Currently, no blood test exists to detect this cancer and the new biomarker will help doctors see the disease that so far has required much more complicated and expensive tests, and that even then has often gone undetected."

Fujirebio is in the process of initiating the clinical development and commercialization of the mesothelioma test. Dr. Daniel O’Shannessy, FDI’s Chief Scientific Officer, says that this new assay "will provide, for the very first time, a highly effective way of tracking disease progression through noninvasive means."

According to Robinson, from whose patients in Australia the blood samples were drawn, the new research also shows that SMR can be elevated in serum up to several years before actual diagnosis of mesothelioma. "The test may thus prove helpful," Robinson says, "for screening asbestos-exposed individuals for early evidence of mesothelioma."


###
Pacific Northwest Research Institute (PNRI) is a private non-profit biomedical and clinical research laboratory in Seattle, focusing on the prevention and cure of diabetes and cancer. PNRI conducts research in tumor immunology, autoimmune disease, growth factor and metabolic signal transduction pathways, oxidative stress, and large-population screening for diabetes and cancer. The Institute is also participating in a pancreatic islet transplantation research program to treat patients with diabetes. Major emphases of the Hellstrom laboratory at PNRI are on early detection of ovarian, breast, and lung cancers and the development of vaccines for therapeutic purposes. For more information, see www.pnri.org.

Fujirebio Diagnostics, Inc. (FDI), is a premier diagnostics company and the industry leader in Tumor Marker assays specializing in the clinical development, manufacturing and commercialization of in vitro diagnostic products for the management of human disease states with an emphasis in Oncology. The company, formerly known as Centocor Diagnostics, was acquired by Fujirebio, Inc. of Tokyo, Japan in November 1998. FDI utilizes its worldwide distribution network to enable access by physicians and patients to its diagnostic products. For more information on Fujirebio group, visit www.fdi.com.

Contacts:
For PNRI: Rich Murphy
Director of Community Relations, PNRI
206-568-1484
rmurphy@pnri.org

For Fujirebio Diagnostics, Inc.:
Jonathan Morein/Gary Gatyas
Dudnyk Public Relations
267-532-1290/267-532-1244

Rich Murphy | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.pnri.org/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Usher syndrome: Gene therapy restores hearing and balance
25.09.2017 | Institut Pasteur

nachricht MRI contrast agent locates and distinguishes aggressive from slow-growing breast cancer
25.09.2017 | Case Western Reserve University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: LaserTAB: More efficient and precise contacts thanks to human-robot collaboration

At the productronica trade fair in Munich this November, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be presenting Laser-Based Tape-Automated Bonding, LaserTAB for short. The experts from Aachen will be demonstrating how new battery cells and power electronics can be micro-welded more efficiently and precisely than ever before thanks to new optics and robot support.

Fraunhofer ILT from Aachen relies on a clever combination of robotics and a laser scanner with new optics as well as process monitoring, which it has developed...

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fraunhofer ISE Pushes World Record for Multicrystalline Silicon Solar Cells to 22.3 Percent

25.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Usher syndrome: Gene therapy restores hearing and balance

25.09.2017 | Health and Medicine

An international team of physicists a coherent amplification effect in laser excited dielectrics

25.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>