EPA Releases Asbestos Report on Former Military Base

Earlier this week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a report describing several options for clean-up at the North Ridge Estates site near Klamath Falls, Oregon, home to a former U.S. Marine barracks.

In the 1940s, the U.S. Navy constructed a Marine barracks on the land, consisting of approximately 80 buildings, all of which contained asbestos building materials. “In the 1970’s those buildings were demolished, and the North Ridge Estates, a residential housing subdivision, was constructed,” explains a story aired on KDRV 12. “Since that time, both the Department of Environmental Quality and the EPA have worked to completely remove the asbestos from the area.”

“On Thursday, crews simulated raking an area where the EPA has not observed asbestos yet. The activity-based sampling mimics what residents do at home to determine if there are asbestos fibers in the soil,” the story stated.

Officials say that though clean-up has happened at various parts of the site, there is still much work to do to make North Ridge Estates asbestos-free. They also stated the this week’s sampling is the last to be done before they finalize details for the remainder of the clean up process.

“Cleaning up asbestos to protect the health of people, we’ll do one of two things. One is to just fence off parts of the site so that people can’t come in contact with the contamination. Another way is to conceal it under a cap of clean soil,” says Public Information Officer Judy Smith.

Carbon Nanotubes the Next Asbestos?

A new study anchored by the University of Edinburgh has declared that long, thin carbon nanotubes might be as harmful as asbestos in the long run, especially if inhaled in sufficient quantities.

According to an Associated Press article, the study evaluated whether the carbon nanotubes can cause mesothelioma, an aggressive cancer for which the only known current cause is exposure to asbestos. The properties of the nanotubes are very similar to those of asbestos and the material is currently being developed for use in new drugs, energy-efficient batteries and futuristic electronics.

However, scientists have begun questioning the safety of the carbon nanotubes and their widespread use. “This study is exactly the kind of strategic, highly-focused research needed to ensure the safe and responsible development of nanotechnology,” said Andrew Maynard, co-author of the study. He published his findings in the latest edition of Nature.

Specifically, the study examined whether long and short carbon nanotubes, long and short asbestos fibers and carbon black cause pathological responses, known to be precursors of mesothelioma.

“The results were clear,” says Maynard. “Long, thin carbon nanotubes showed the same effects as long, thin asbestos fibers.”

“So we’ve got one piece of the puzzle here,” Maynard added. “There are a couple of other pieces of the puzzle which still need to be filled in and those are asking whether exposure to this material actually will occur.”

“Whether people can breathe it in and if they do, whether these fibers can work their way to the outer edge of the lung and then cause an effect. But we knew that if those two things happened, there is a very strong change that the prolonged carbon nanotubes will eventually lead to this disease.”

$3.2 Million Asbestos Verdict Upheld

A Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal upheld a $3.2 million verdict on behalf of plaintiff Ray Rando against contractors Parsons Infrastructure & Technology Group, Inc. and Jacobs Constructors, Inc. Rando worked as a welder and pipefitter from 1965 to 1985 and developed mesothelioma as a result of asbestos exposure while he worked for the defendants. He was diagnosed with the disease in 2006 and the original case was heard about 15 months ago.

“Ray Rando’s employers tried repeatedly to evade responsibility for his injuries, but these committed attorneys convinced the trial court, and then the Court of Appeal, that these companies were responsible to their employees for exposing them to dangerous levels of asbestos,” said attorney Russell Budd in a recent press release.

“The appeals court confirmed that Louisiana’s 1952 Workers’ Compensation Act does not cover mesothelioma and so does not bar suits by mesothelioma victims against their employers,” the press release noted. Also, the Court of Appeal ruled that Rando’s case “was not barred by Louisiana’s 10-year preemptive period to bring claims for injuries arising from deficiencies in the construction of improvements to real property.”

The court also ruled that, because Rando’s employer, a contractor who did major “turn-key” construction jobs at a chemical plant, had “control over the construction” at the time of his asbestos exposure, Rando’s claims against his employer “fell within the statute’s exception and were not untimely.”

Family of Pipefitter Files Second Asbestos Suit

The family of a Texas man who spent his life working as a pipefitter has filed a second asbestos suit on his behalf, alleging that he died from mesothelioma as a result of exposure to asbestos while on the job.

According to an article in the Southeast Texas Record, the estate of Ernest L. Edwards is seeking compensation for a “different malignant asbestos-related injury,” which they claim prematurely ended his life. Edwards sued several years ago when he developed “an asbestos related disease” and received compensation, the article notes.

The suit was filed earlier this month against the A.O. Smith Corporation and 34 other companies. A.O. Smith manufactures electric motors as well as electric and gas water heaters. The claim alleges that those named in the suit knowingly and maliciously manufactured and distributed asbestos-containing products throughout Jefferson County (Texas). Other defendants named in the suit include aerospace giant Lockheed Martin and Zurn Industries, an iron supplier.

“The petition faults Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Corp. (3M Corporation) and American Optical Corp. for producing defective masks that failed to provide respiratory protection,” the article adds.

Although Edwards has already sued and received a claim, the suit says, “Plaintiff now seeks damages against defendants not released in the previous actions pursuant to Pustejovsky v. Rapid-American Corp.”

In Texas, victims of an asbestos disease such as asbestosis may sue a second time for an asbestos-related cancer if he develops the cancer in the future, after the onset of the original disease.

Asbestos Scare Closes NJ School

A Montclair, New Jersey school remained closed today after high levels of hazardous asbestos were found in side the building.

According to an article in The Star-Ledger, Renaissance Middle School, which houses 239 students, was evacuated last Friday after testing found airborne asbestos in one of four samples taken during the installation of fire doors on the school’s third floor.

The sample had a reading of “460 structures” which, according to Steve Jaraczewski of Detail Associates, the Montclair school district’s asbestos consultant, is more than six times the acceptable levels. The school was build in 1899, when asbestos was regularly used as a fire retardant in schools and other commercial buildings. The mineral is a known carcinogen.

Parents were astounded at the news. “You want to keep them home tomorrow?” asked Frank Alvarez, the superintendent of schools, at a meeting held with parents on Monday morning. “Yes, Yes,” most of the parents shouted.

Cleanup was to begin over the weekend and was overseen by the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Parents requested that the students’ lockers also be included in the cleanup. Jaraczewski also told parents they should discard their children’s backpacks as a safeguard against asbestos fibers adhering to the porous fabric.

“If it was my kid … I’d get rid of the backpack,” Jaraczewski said.

The building that houses Renaissance Middle School is owned by the Archdiocese of Newark and leased to Montclair School District. Jaraczewski blamed the archdiocese for their poor asbestos management plan but parents were annoyed at the finger pointing.

Dana Sullivan, the Montclair schools’ business administrator, said the district just discovered that asbestos was present in a brown undercoating of plaster that is found on the walls throughout the school.

“We had not yet informed [the archdiocese] because we had not received a written report yet,” Sullivan said. “I wish we had. I don’t know that it would have mattered. I don’t know.”
The diocese, which performed the fire-door replacement at the district’s request, informed the district that work would begin last Monday, several days before school officials noticed the broken plaster, Sullivan said.

“We knew they were putting in fire doors. What we didn’t know was that they were disturbing this plaster, this brown coat,” Sullivan explained.

FDA Speeds Possible Second-Line Therapy for Mesothelioma cancer

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted Fast lane classification just recently to the WT1 cancer vaccine, moving it closer to ending up being the very first accepted second-line treatment for deadly pleural mesothelioma cancer.

The vaccine, also known as galinpepimut-S, is an immunotherapy representative that targets the WT1 healthy protein, which is expressed in high degrees in numerous cancers, such as mesothelioma cancer, yet it’s hardly ever seen in normal grown-up cells. The protein is specifically immune to conventional radiation treatment representatives.

The National Cancer Institute in 2009 ranked WT1 as the leading target of cancer immunotherapy research study.

Sellas Life Sciences Group, a Switzerland-based biopharmaceutical firm concentrated on immunotherapeutic representatives, created the vaccine. ” Galinpepimut-S has the possible to become a significant treatment method to extend survival for patients with mesothelioma cancer,” Sellas Chief Executive Officer Dr. Angelos Stergiou told Asbestos.com. “We are discovering all developmental and governing alternatives to make the vaccination offered asap.”

The FDA’s Fast Track classification is designed to speed up the testimonial of a medicine as well as help in its development. The FDA targets drugs that resolve unmet medical needs for serious as well as deadly conditions.

It usually takes federal regulatory authorities a years or even more to authorize a medication.

Mesothelioma cancer is an unusual and hostile cancer triggered by direct exposure to asbestos fibers, usually after years of occupational direct exposure. Medical professionals diagnose the illness in an estimated 3,000 people every year in the United States. Previously this year, the FDA granted the WT1 injection orphan drug classification after assessing outcomes of Sellas’ stage II medical test entailing 40 people with pleural mesothelioma. The orphan drug classification additionally motivates medicine growth for uncommon illness, however mostly by offering financial incentives.

Criterion first-line therapy for mesothelioma is usually a combination of chemotherapy, surgical treatment and also radiation, but the majority of individuals still live less than two years after diagnosis. Therapeutic progression has actually come slowly.

There presently is no FDA-approved second-line treatment (after first-line has actually quit working), a void Sellas hopes its WT1 vaccination could fill up.

Patients in Sellas’ stage II, placebo-controlled professional test had an average overall survival of 24.8 months, compared with a mean overall survival of 16.6 months for those not receiving the injection.

Sellas prepares to carry out a mesothelioma stage III test involving the WT1 injection in 2017. Websites for the multicenter trial have not been announced.

The study personnel at Sellas anticipates much better cause the following trial. The stage II trial consisted of six vaccine shots carried out to each patient when every two weeks. The phase III test will certainly consist of up to 12 vaccinations, together with booster injections.

Jury Awards Mesothelioma Victim’s Family $17 Million

A federal jury in Arizona has actually granted an overall of $17 million to the making it through partner and kids of an employee who passed away of mesothelioma cancer triggered by direct exposure to asbestos.

In December 2012, George Coulbourn submitted an item liability action in Mohave County Superior Court. He declared he was exposed to business’ asbestos-containing items and/or equipment while working as a machinist for the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Virginia, from 1959 to 1966, court records reveal.

After Mr. Coulbourn passed away of mesothelioma cancer in August 2013, his partner and kids modified his grievance and brought a wrongful death action, records reveal.

On Friday, following a three-week trial, a U.S. District Court of Arizona federal jury granted $6 million to Mr. Coulbourn’s widow, Sandra Brown Coulbourn, and $1 million to each of his 3 kids, George Charles Coulbourn Jr., Scott Alan Coulbourn and Shannon Coulbourn Moses, according to court records and a declaration by the household’s legal representatives at Dallas-based Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett P.C.

Amongst the more than 20 offenders are Stamford, Connecticut-based commercial items business Crane Co., which was bought to pay Mr. Coulbourn’s household $5 million in compensatory damages, and Cincinnati, Ohio-based valve producer William Powell Business, which was bought to pay $3 million in compensatory damages, according to the decision.

In addition to the $17 million award, the jury discovered the United States Navy to be 47 % accountable for Mr. Coulbourn’s injuries and death. It discovered Crane and William Powell to be accountable for 20 % and 5 %, respectively, while other offenders were examined a 1 % or 0 % obligation score.

Asbestos is resolved in U.S. Occupational Security and Health Administration requirements for the building market, basic market and shipyard work sectors. The requirements need that “companies offer individual direct exposure keeping track of to examine the threat and risk awareness training for operations where there is any possible direct exposure to asbestos,” to name a few things.

Live Bacterium Improves Response Rate in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma

Immunotherapy with a live germs integrated with chemotherapy showed more than 90 % illness control and 59 % reaction rate in patients with deadly pleural mesothelioma cancer (MPM), according to the outcomes of a stage Ib trial provided today at the European Lung Cancer Conference (ELCC) 2016 in Geneva, Switzerland.1.

“Malignant pleural mesothelioma cancer is a cancer of the lining of the lung and is unusual however challenging to deal with,” stated Prof Thierry Jahan, teacher of medication at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center in San Francisco, United States. “Standard of care treatment with pemetrexed and platinum substance chemotherapy gets a 30 % reaction rate however a modest influence on survival. There is a clear unmet requirement in targeting this certain population.”.

Patients with MPM highly reveal the mesothelin antigen in the tumour. CRS-207 is a live, attenuated Listeria monocytogenes germs which contains 2 gene removals to decrease its pathogenicity and has actually likewise been crafted to reveal mesothelin.

“In our early research studies, CRS-207 caused an anti-mesothelin reaction and cellular tumour certain resistance in patients with mesothelin revealing tumours,” stated Jahan. “We likewise have information recommending that this immunotherapy works synergistically with chemotherapy, so checking the impact of this immune targeting representative with chemotherapy was a natural action.”.

The present research analyzed the effect of CRS-207 integrated with conventional chemotherapy in patients with sophisticated unresectable mesothelioma cancer who were prospects for chemotherapy. It consisted of 38 patients who got 2 CRS-207 infusions 2 weeks apart, approximately 6 cycles of pemetrexed plus cisplatin 3 weeks apart, followed by 2 added CRS-207 infusions 3 weeks apart. Qualified patients got upkeep CRS-207 every 8 weeks. Patients were followed every 8 weeks till condition development.

After a mean follow up of 9.4 months (variety: 0.2-28.1 months), the private investigators discovered that 59 % of.

patients had partial reaction and 35 % had steady condition, for a general 94 % illness control rate. Average development complimentary survival was 8.5 months. Jahan stated: “Patients getting the mix of CRS-207 and chemotherapy had a deep reaction, with more than 90 % illness control.”.

The main side-effects connected with CRS-207 administration were temperature level spike and rigors. These were associated with the infusion and fixed within 24 Hr. “The security of the representative was amazing,” stated Jahan. “It actually does seem safe, and was well-tolerated in mix with pemetrexed and platinum chemotherapy. There didn’t appear to be any advancing toxicity.”.

Immunohistochemistry analysis in 3 patients revealed significant recruitment and growth of tumour penetrating leukocytes following the administration of the treatment. There was likewise an improvement of penetrating CD8+ cells, macrophages and natural killer cells.

Jahan stated: “We saw great immune activation which validated the preclinical hypotheses for using this representative. It appears to turn on both inherent and adaptive resistance and after that establishes a synergistic effectiveness with the chemotherapy.”.

He concluded: “CRS-207 is an amazing representative for patients with mesothelioma cancer. Our initial outcomes are motivating, recommending remarkable scientific activity when contributed to conventional chemotherapy. This supports examining the effect of CRS-207 in a randomised trial, which is presently in the preparation phases and must be underway within this fiscal year.”.

Talking about the research study, Prof Rolf Stahel, Professor of oncology at the University Hospital Zurich in Zurich, Switzerland, stated: “The findings recommend that the addition of this kind of immunotherapy enhances the reaction rate, and offers a longer development totally free survival, compared with exactly what would be anticipated with chemotherapy alone. This supports the hypothesis of advantage of this vaccination which will be analyzed in a randomised trial to show or negate the survival advantage of vaccination contributed to chemotherapy.”.

Good News for Mesothelioma Patients

The Indiana Supreme Court just recently overruled a part of the state’s Item Liability Act, providing mesothelioma cancer clients more versatility in filing asbestos-related legal claims versus irresponsible producers.

It was a much-needed, long-awaited triumph for those stricken by the incurable condition.

The judgment, however, still should be settled, waiting for the court’s choice on whether to rehear the case. The hold-up originates from a movement submitted in March by the state and the accused.

If completed, as prepared for, the judgment will put Indiana in action with other states that are more responsive to claims from mesothelioma cancer clients.

“All [the brand-new arrangement] does is provide them [clients] the right to in fact provide their cases to a jury, to really step forward with their case, rather of being stopped at the court house doors,” Indianapolis lawyer Kathy Farinas informed Indystar.com. Her law office represented the complainant.

At concern: The constitutionality of the statute of repose within the Item Liability Act that produced a 10-year cutoff date for permitting a complainant to take legal action against a maker.

The 10-year countdown, according to the existing statute, need to start at the time the item reaches the customer. For those with an asbestos-related condition, such as mesothelioma cancer, the latency duration in between direct exposure and medical diagnosis is normally 20-50 years.

Basically, the statute of repose dealt with most asbestos claims in Indiana. It compelled victims to look for jurisdiction in another state, which frequently was challenging to do.

The state Supreme Court ruled the 10-year cutoff needs to not use to cases including conditions, such as mesothelioma cancer, that take years to be detected.

He appealed the judgment to the state’s Supreme Court, thinking the statute of repose was not indicated to obstruct cases like his. In 1989, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled that the statute ought to not use to health problems that take years to emerge. In 2003, the court chose otherwise, reverting back to the 10-year cutoff and substantially restricting the number of asbestos-related cases provided prior to a jury.

The Indiana Supreme Court, in its judgment last month, reversed course after 13 years and stated asbestos-related claims cannot be obstructed by a 10-year arrangement if an individual does not understand he is ill.

Deadly Pleural Mesothelioma Linked to Inflammatory Macrophage

The inflammatory macrophage migration inhibitory aspect (MIF) may impact the advancement of deadly pleural mesothelioma cancer. A research into the aspect’s result on cells originated from various mesothelioma cancer cell types and phases, nevertheless, revealed a rather complicated photo, signifying the requirement for additional research studies on the inflammatory conciliator in living designs.

Cancer research study, examining other kinds of cancer, has actually reported that MIF may be associated with the reproduction procedure of cancer cells, and researchers have actually observed a link in between MIF levels and cancer diagnosis. The element is produced by cells related to growths, such as macrophages and fibroblasts.

The research study group from University Hospitals and University of Geneva, Switzerland, examined the function of MIF and its receptor, called CD74, in 6 various lines of cultured cells originated from mesothelioma cancer patients, along with in one cell line stemmed from non-cancerous human mesothelium. The 6 mesothelioma cancer cell lines were initially stemmed from various subtypes of cells.

Scientist kept in mind that the cells originated from cancers had high varieties of the MIF receptor CD74, however secreted lower levels of the aspect itself, compared with cells from typical mesothelium. This recommended that mesothelioma cancer cells are more conscious MIF than typical cells. In cells with greater levels of both MIF and its receptor, the research study group kept in mind greater reproduction rates, and the cells appeared to be safeguarded from cell death. When the group obstructed both MIF and its receptor the scenario was reversed, with cells increasing less, and passing away more.

When scientists injected mice with cells from 2 of the cell lines revealing high levels of CD74, and 2 with low levels of the receptor, they kept in mind that greater levels of CD74 were connected to a lower cell capacity to grow growths.

These comprehensive distinctions are most likely discussed by the environment where the growth cells discover themselves. Cells in culture are surrounded by a standardized environment through development medium, while cells in the body are exposed to a variety of signals both from surrounding cell types and aspects present in the blood.

Previous experiments by the group revealed that in human mesothelioma cancer tissue, not exposed to culture conditions, low CD74 levels were related to low patient survival rates, a scenario appearing like the mice experiments. It is, for that reason, vital to remain to study the function of MIF and its receptor in animal designs of the illness.