Background: Malignant mesothelioma (MM) is an aggressive disease that is diagnosed mostly in locally advanced or metastatic stage. In this condition chemotherapy with the combination cisplatin and pemetrexed or ralitrexed represents the standard treatment as supported by a phase III study. However, chemotherapy has very limited effect on the improvement of survival of patients and very few of the MM patients survive more than 2 years. A better understanding of molecular mechanisms and pathways involved in angiogenesis in MM is the basis for the development of new drugs targeted against these pathways responsible for the proliferation and survival of tumor cells. Objective: This review discusses the role of angiogenic factors in tumourigenesis with a particular focus on MM and it summarizes the results of clinical trials on the drugs targeting angiogenic pathways in MM. Methods: We have used original research articles, abstracts and oral presentations from ASCO (American Society of Clinical Oncology) and the website of clinical trials http://www.ClinicalTrials.gov Results/Conclusions: This review summarizes the results of antiangiogenic agents under evaluation in clinical trials. A better understanding of the angiogenic pathways activated in MM will hopefully provide new therapeutic options for these patients in the future.
Keywords: Malignant mesothelioma, targeted therapy, VEGF, PDGF, TGFβ, FGF, antiangiogenic drugs
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