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Screening and Prevention

Although Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations mandate that chest X-rays be performed at intervals for individuals who are in high-risk asbestos exposure occupations, there are no approved screening tests for mesothelioma.

The NYU Division of Thoracic Surgery is recognized as the Biomarker Discovery Laboratory by the National Cancer Institute and has grant funding to explore ways of finding the disease earlier.

Proteins in the blood are being tested to see if they are specific for mesothelioma, which would make it possible to distinguish individuals who may have been exposed to asbestos from those who actually have the cancer. If proteins can be found which are sensitive and specific for mesothelioma, they could be used for mesothelioma screening or monitoring the disease's response to therapy.