Researchers at the University of Hawaii have identified a specific protein which will assist Oncologists to more accurately diagnose a patient with mesothelioma over lung cancer.
This protein, termed BAP1, was found to be more common in lung cancer tumours than in mesothelioma cancer tumours. In the study, the Hawaii based team reviewed 45 lung cancer cell samples and 35 of the pleural mesothelioma cells. In the mesothelioma cells the majority did not show signs of the protein BAP1, whereas in the lung cancer cells, all of them tested positive for this protein.
Unfortunately, there is a high rate of misdiagnosis of mesothelioma and therefore any measures which will improve this rate are considered very beneficial. The rates of misdiagnosis vary from country to country. In the USA for example, it is thought that mesothelioma is misdiagnosed approximately 10% of the time, though no conclusive figure can be calculated/
Although the symptoms of mesothelioma and lung cancer tend to be similar, the treatments and prognosis are often different. As a result of misdiagnosis, a large number of patients suffering from mesothelioma are not being adequately cared for.
Due to the lower rates of diagnosed mesothelioma, often oncologists rarely come across the disease and therefore it is likely to impinge on their ability to treat this correctly.
Prognosis for mesothelioma usually ranges between 6 and 18 months and one view is that the lack of adequate diagnosis reduces the overall prognosis rates. This could in turn, reduce treatment options available to patients suffering with this terrible asbestos related disease. However, if this protein is considered during the early diagnostic stage, it could improve these diagnostic rates and assist in treating mesothelioma patients throughout the course of their period of suffering.
The cancer mesothelioma is directly attributable to previous contact with asbestos. One common form of the cancer is termed pleural mesothelioma. This cancer is extremely aggressive and attacks the thin membrane in the thoracic cavity and the lungs and can also affect the thin lining of the abdomen in the form of peritoneal mesothelioma.
If you require assistance in pursuing a mesothelioma claim or believe you have a valid asbestos claim for any other condition, please contact us today on our freephone number 0800 038 6767. Alternatively, head over to the ‘Contact Us’ page, complete the form and we will be in touch.