Advanced and recurring thymic carcinoma is target of new clinical trial

Anatomy of thymus gland

Anatomy of the thymus gland. The thymus gland is a small organ that lies in the upper chest under the breastbone. It makes white blood cells, called lymphocytes, which protect the body against infections.

Adults diagnosed with thymic carcinoma that overexpress the protein mesothelin may be eligible to participate in a new clinical trial at the NIH Clinical Center. The thymus is a small organ that sits in the upper chest under the breastbone and trains white blood cells to protect the body against infections. Thymic carcinomas are rare tumors that form from cells of the thymus gland. Currently, there are no approved standard-of-care options for advanced thymic carcinoma.

Arun Rajan, M.D., an Associate Research Physician in the Thoracic and Gastrointestinal Oncology Branch is leading a study that will look at the safety and effectiveness of an investigational drug, anetumab ravtansine, developed by Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals. The drug works by binding to mesothelin, therefore overexpression of the protein could be useful for targeting cancer cells.

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Summary Posted: 02/2018