The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved a new orphan drug that is designed to help fight malignant mesothelioma. A spokesperson from the drug manufacturer, AstraZeneca, said tremelimumab is an immune system stimulant that kills cancer cells when it binds with CTLA-4 protein on the surface of activated T-lymphocytes in the body. Mesothelioma is a rare cancer that is directly associated with exposure to asbestos, and affects the lining of internal organs in the body, specifically those in the lungs and abdomen. Once diagnosed, patients face limited treatment options and a grim prognosis.
Tremelimumab is also being evaluated as a possible treatment option for cancers of the head and neck, in small cell lung cancers, and in malignant solid tumors. The drug is a human antibody that uses the body’s own immune system to detect and kill cancer cells, and is part of a new trend in biologic research and development. Currently, less than five percent of patients diagnosed with mesothelioma survive longer than five years. Early diagnosis and available treatments have not been successful in prolonging the life expectancy of mesothelioma patients. Tremelimumab brings new hope to those diagnosed with terminal mesothelioma.
Orphan drug status is granted by the FDA to innovative drugs that offer safe treatment options for rare diseases that affect less than 200,000 people in the United States. The FDA orphan status grants exclusive rights to the manufacturer to sell the drug for seven years with no competition from other pharmaceutical companies. In some cases, incentives are granted for participation in clinical trials.
If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with mesothelioma due to exposure to asbestos, you may be eligible to receive compensation. Medical bills, surgeries, and prescriptions for mesothelioma can quickly deplete a family’s financial resources. The experienced New Jersey mesothelioma lawyers at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler are dedicated to helping those suffering from this terminal cancer claim the compensation and justice they deserve.
Call the New Jersey mesothelioma law firm of Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler toll free at 800-369-0899 or complete our online contact form to schedule a consultation today. Our office is conveniently located in Philadelphia, allowing us to serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Chester County and Delaware County.