After years of asbestos mining and use of the carcinogenic material in the construction of homes, buildings and infrastructure, Australia experiences an extraordinarily high percentage of its population affected by malignant mesothelioma. To address the high rates of the disease, the country invests in innovative research, including a clinical trial slated for 2021 that will investigate the use of a natural substance called curcumin.
Scientists Hope Curcumin Will Provide Benefit for Mesothelioma Patients
Curcumin is a compound found in the spice turmeric, and it has been linked to therapeutic benefits in many types of cancers, including malignant mesothelioma. It is at the center of the research that scientists from Flinders University in Adelaide, South Australia have announced they will be conducting in 2021.
The mesothelioma researchers are looking at whether curcumin can be used as a natural alternative to chemotherapy that offers the same or better benefits with fewer adverse effects. They are also hoping to find a way to detect the disease earlier in its progression to see whether doing so can prevent death from the disease.
Mesothelioma Research to Center on Intrapleural Liposomal Curcumin
The mesothelioma researchers will investigate the use of intrapleural liposomal curcumin. This involves either intrapleural injection or intravenous infusion of curcumin into the pleural cavity to determine its impact on tumors, on patient survival and on patient quality of life. They hope that it will not only be more effective, but also have fewer toxic side effects than what is experienced in chemotherapy.
Lead researcher Associate Professor Sonja Klebe spoke of the importance of finding new approaches to treating mesothelioma, saying, “It’s important to explore alternative therapies and facilitate early diagnosis to reduce suffering and support early intervention measures.” The group is also conducting a new lung fluid test, saying, “In most cases, malignant mesothelioma is not diagnosed until it is in the late stages. We’re hoping to find a way to test for the disease before it becomes invasive.”
Mesothelioma research is essential to the effective treatment of current and future mesothelioma patients. If you or someone you love has or is at risk of the disease and you need information, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today at 1-800-692-8608.