Fibulin-3 Plasma Test Research Ongoing for Earlier Detection of Mesothelioma

It is critical that mesothelioma victims and those affected by other forms of lung cancer are provided advanced medical care. Early detection of these cancers could ensure an extension of quality life, and better treatment options. Mesothelioma lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm work to ensure that victims of this deadly lung disease receive excellent care and support.

Numerous reports have come out regarding a new kind of blood test that may be able to spot mesothelioma – one of the rarest but deadliest kinds of cancers.

Mesothelioma is notoriously difficult to detect, however the introduction of this new blood and lung fluid test identifies the presence of a protein called fibulin-3 in plasma. Identifying this bio-marker could contribute to significantly earlier detection of mesothelioma, which could also lead to better treatment for it. This new marker could help help determine whether the individual developed mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure. Fibulin-3 was found to be around four or five times greater in mesothelioma patients than in other individuals exposed to asbestos.

At the New York University Langone Medical Center, 92 mesothelioma patients were tested for fibulin-3 presence, as were 93 patients without mesothelioma but with dangerous fluid in their lung. Additionally, 136 people with exposure to asbestos and no lung cancer and 43 healthy individuals having absolutely no asbestos exposure were tested. Lung fluid was also tested in 74 mesothelioma patients, 39 individuals having lung fluid without cancer and 54 with cancer that is not mesothelioma. Chicago mesothelioma lawyers closely followed the research.

The level of fibulin-3 plasma was significantly higher in patients with mesothelioma, and similar results were gathered in the lung fluid tests. The researchers also discovered that measuring fibulin-3 levels results in a 96.7% correct cancer identification, and a 95.5% correct non-cancer identification

The latency period between initial exposure to asbestos and the development of mesothelioma is between 20-50 years. Mesothelioma is not often detected until its most advanced stage, resulting in a very short median survival time. This is why early detection is so important. Chest pain, cough, night sweats, weight loss and shortness of breath are the typical symptoms of mesothelioma.

This same researcher who conducted the NYU study has previously reported a possible biomarker of mesothelioma called osteopontin. However, after the initial success of the team in 2005, other labs could not reproduce the results. Osteopontin is not as specific as fibulin-3, which seems to appear only after asbestos exposure.

More research still needs to be conducted, particularly on individuals who have been exposed to asbestos but not developed any symptoms of mesothelioma. This demographic will help understand whether fibulin-3 can help detect the possibility of the cancer even before the symptoms are evident. Because the fatality rate is so high, additional testing is urgent.

Mesothelioma develops in the protective linings surrounding the chest, heart, abdomen and lungs, and is almost exclusively attributable to asbestos exposure. The US National Cancer Institute warns that living or working in areas that have the presence of asbestos or asbestos dust is an immense threat and will result in development of related illnesses.

The US Environmental Protection Agency highlights that asbestos is now chiefly used in the manufacturing industries, in plumbing and construction products because of its strength and resistance to fire. It can also be found in the brake and clutch parts of older automobiles.

Wrongful death lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm warn that the continued use of asbestos in America poses a major threat to public health. The inhalation of toxic asbestos fibers leads to mesothelioma and other potentially fatal asbestos-related illnesses.


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