Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program

scan of a human chest

Program Overview

Penn Medicine's Abramson Cancer Center offers more treatment options for mesothelioma and pleural disease than most medical centers across the nation and around the world. Our Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program brings together internationally renowned experts in medical, surgical and radiation oncology, as well as pulmonology. Our multidisciplinary approach to caring for those diagnosed with mesothelioma and pleural disease provides better outcomes and gives patients access to the most advanced treatment, surgical techniques and clinical trials.

Conditions Treated by the Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program

Why Penn's Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program is Different

Our Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program is unique in many ways, offering:

  • Nationally recognized experts with extensive experience in diagnosing and treating mesothelioma and related disorders, as well as those at risk, including:
    • Thoracic oncology surgeons who specialize in removing lung tumors
    • Medical oncologists who treat lung diseases with chemotherapy
    • Radiologists who use a variety of imaging techniques to check for the presence of tumors
    • Pulmonologists with extensive experience in diagnosing lung diseases
    • Pathologists who are experts in evaluating lung tissue
  • Multidisciplinary evaluation and coordinated care throughout the experience
  • Advanced testing for precise diagnosis and staging 
  • Advanced treatments and technologies
  • Support services and education programs
  • A reputation for sensitivity and responsiveness

Treatments and Services Offered by the Mesothelioma and Pleural Disease Program

A Premier Research Program

Our prominent lung cancer, mesothelioma and related disorders research program is conducting important studies and ensuring that the latest discoveries are immediately translated to better patient care. The knowledge gained through our research allows us to better care for people with an elevated risk for mesothelioma and pleural disease and those who have the disease itself.

Our research program:

  • Continues to be on the cutting-edge of designing novel treatments for lung cancer, mesothelioma and related disorders.
  • Has lung cancer researchers who are leaders in an international effort to potentially revolutionize the prevention and management of lung cancer through the creation of the first international lung cancer registry. This initiative aims to deepen the understanding of lung cancer at its earliest, most treatable stages.
  • Developed a treatment for mesothelioma based on work in the laboratory and continues to test its effectiveness through a National Cancer Institute grant.
  • Is a major center for mesothelioma clinical trials, allowing us to provide some of the newest and best therapies to our patients.

Our investigators are conducting exciting Phase I/II trials including:

  • Combination chemotherapy/surgery/radiation for mesothelioma
  • Autologous tumor vaccine for lung cancer and mesothelioma
  • PDT for treating currently untreatable tumors
  • Cell manipulation to enhance immune response for lung cancer, and mesothelioma
  • A Tobacco and Environmental Carcinogenesis Program that is studying the relationships between environmental exposures and cancer with a focus on prevention of tobacco and asbestos-related cancers including lung cancer, head and neck cancer and mesothelioma.