A recent report tracking trends in medical research and drug development has forecast that the worldwide incidence of malignant mesothelioma is expected to rise in the next several years. It also details the continuing efforts into finding a cure for this rare and fatal form of cancer.
Among the key takeaways for healthcare professionals, mesothelioma patients, and those in the scientific and mesothelioma advocacy communities are the following:
- The number of mesothelioma deaths that were reported worldwide among adults aged 45 or older was 18,370 in 2016. That number does not include those whose asbestos-related disease were not specifically diagnosed.
- It is anticipated that by the year 2025, the number of mesothelioma deaths worldwide among the 45 or older population will surpass 22,000.
- The area of the world that is currently hardest hit by malignant mesothelioma is Oceania, which has a disease incidence of 2.85 per 100,000 males and 0.50 per 100,000 females. Countries in the Caribbean and in Latin America have the lowest incidence of the disease.
- Pemetrexed (Alimta) continues to be the only drug that has been approved for the treatment of malignant mesothelioma in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration. Other drugs are in various stages of development and clinical testing, with most of the industry-sponsored drugs currently in Phase II testing. The drug that is closest to coming to market is a liquid formulation of pemetrexed.
- Though the United States is forecast to have far fewer patients diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma than either European countries or Asian countries, it has far more clinical trials for mesothelioma drugs that are ongoing. Following the United States is the United Kingdom for Europe, and Japan for Asia. Japan also has the highest incidence of mesothelioma. Worldwide, most of the drugs under development are in early and mid-phases.
If you have been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma and need information on access to clinical trials, support groups, care providers or any other resources, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net. Contact us at 1-800-692-8608.