Although both men and women can suffer from mesothelioma, but women will statistically often survive longer with the disease. In Italy, scientists are finding out why the female gender is a positive prognostic indicator for this deadly cancer. They had theorirized that the hormone estrogen and estrogen receptors may be involved and one study now say they were on the right track. See the study published by Pinton G, et al., Estrogen receptor-beta affects the prognosis of human malignant mesothelioma. Cancer Res. 2009 Jun 1;69(11):4598-604.
Echoing this finding, a recent study published in the Chinese Journal of Physiology reported that decreases in circulatory estrogen (estradiol (E2)) significantly increased the risk of colorectal cancer. Furthermore, patients that received E2 replacement therapy were found to have a reduction in the incidence of colon adenoma and carcinoma.
Hsu HH, et al., Apoptotic effects of over-expressed estrogen receptor-beta on LoVo colon cancer cell is mediated by p53 signalings in a ligand-dependent manner. Chin J Physiol. 2006 Apr 30.
Hopefully these findings will lead to new approaches to the treatment of mesothelioma.