Alert: We're here for you. Learn how COVID-19 may affect your mesothelioma treatment and cancer center visits.

Jump to a Topic:

Doctors at Mayo Clinic Minnesota

Patients Come First at Mayo Clinic Minnesota

Since the Mayo Clinic was founded in the late 1800s, its philosophy has always been based on the idea that “the needs of the patient come first.” The hospital in Rochester began as Saint Mary’s Hospital and was staffed by Dr. William Worrel Mayo and his sons, Drs. William J. and Charles Mayo.

The Mayo Model of Care includes several basic fundamentals:

  • Quality medical care provided by a team of specialists
  • Thorough medical care and taking the time to listen to the patient
  • Forming partnerships with the patient’s local physician
  • Medical care with compassion and trust
  • Providing the most innovative and advanced therapeutic and diagnostic technology and techniques

Based on this philosophy, the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, is ranked No. 3 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report and No. 4 in cancer treatment. The hospital employs some of the most talented doctors in the world and treats hundreds of thousands of patients every year. The Minnesota campus includes Saint Mary’s Hospital and Rochester Methodist Hospital and employs a staff of 32,000.

Mayo Clinic Dedicated to Research and Treatment

The state-of-the-art Mayo Clinic Cancer Center has been designated a National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center for over 40 years. This prestigious designation highlights the clinic’s dedication to cancer research and being at the forefront of cancer treatment. With locations in Minnesota, Florida and Arizona, the cancer center provides the highest level of patient care. The cancer center treats mesothelioma and lung cancer patients from all over the world. Experts in specialties such as thoracic surgery, oncology, pathology, radiation therapy and pulmonary medicine ensure that patients get the best care possible.

Each year, more than 12,000 patients with over 200 different types of cancer are diagnosed and treated at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. This adds to the center’s vast expertise in treating malignancies, including rare diseases such as mesothelioma. In addition, because Mayo spends about 40 percent of its funding on research, patients can access hundreds of clinical trials with the most advanced treatments possible.

Mesothelioma and Lung Cancer Specialists at Mayo Clinic

Doctors at Mayo Clinic Minnesota that specialize in mesothelioma and lung cancer include:

  • Mark S. Allen, M.D., Thoracic Surgeon is certified by the American Board of Surgery and Thoracic Surgery. Dr. Allen is also a professor of Surgery at the Mayo Medical School and has published a number of peer-reviewed articles. He has participated in clinical trials.
  • Stephen D. Cassivi, M.D., Thoracic Surgeon is certified by the American Board of Surgery and Thoracic Surgery and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dr. Cassivi is an Associate Professor of Surgery at the Mayo Medical School and has also published in a number of journals. Dr. Cassivi is particularly involved in clinical trials involving early detection of lung cancer using spiral CT scans.
  • Francis C. Nichols III, M.D., Thoracic Surgeon, Chair, Division of General Thoracic Surgery, Department of Surgery is certified by the American Board of Surgery and Thoracic Surgery. Dr. Nichols is an Associate Professor of Surgery at the Mayo Medical School and has participated in various published studies.

Drs. Allen, Cassivi and Nichols participated in a study that reviewed the surgical management of malignant pleural mesothelioma involving 285 patients who underwent extrapleural pneumonectomies. The study found that while this invasive operation can be performed with a better survival rate than subtotal pleurectomy, exploration without resection and biopsy alone, the three-year survival rate was only 14 percent.

Find More Top Cancer Centers

New Treatments Coming to Mayo Clinic

As a part of the local community it serves, the Mayo Clinic strives to tackle local health issues. Recently, cases of mesothelioma have been on the rise in Minnesota’s northern Iron Range region as a result of heavy taconite (a mineral similar to asbestos) mining in the area. Two top researchers, Stephen Russell, M.D. and Juan Molina, M.D., are spearheading efforts to implement novel treatments for mesothelioma.

Mesothelioma Clinical Trials at Mayo Clinic Minnesota

  • A phase II clinical trial to evaluate the effectiveness of using anetumab ravtansine, cytotoxic therapy that targets a surface protein, in combination with pembrolizumab (Keytruda), for patients with pleural mesothelioma.
  • A clinical trial to determine the effectiveness of using intrapleural cryotherapy (a freezing spray) to activate a patient’s immune system before surgery for pleural mesothelioma.
  • A clinical trial for patients with pleural mesothelioma to determine whether the use of radiation therapy prior to aggressive surgery can decrease the tumor size and spread.
  • A clinical trial for patients to measure the effectiveness of using standard chemotherapy before aggressive surgery and neoadjuvant hemithoracic intensity modulated radiation therapy.
  • A phase III clinical trial to measure the effectiveness of using ADI-PEG20, an enzyme targeting an amino acid helping fuel cancer cells, along with standard chemotherapy for patients with pleural mesothelioma.

Disclaimer: Mayo Clinic Minnesota has no professional affiliation with

Stethoscope Icon
Get Help Contacting this Cancer Center

We value your privacy. By submitting, you agree to our privacy policy and disclaimer.

stethoscope icon
Get Help Contacting this Doctor

We value your privacy. By submitting, you agree to our privacy policy and disclaimer.

Get Free Recipes for Mesothelioma Patients

Get Your Guide Mesothelioma Packet

Get the Top Mesothelioma Guide for Free

Get Yours Now

Get the Compensation You Deserve

Find an Attorney

Senior Content Writer

Tim Povtak is an award-winning writer with more than 30 years of reporting national and international news. His specialty is interviewing top mesothelioma specialists and researchers, reporting the latest news at mesothelioma cancer centers and talking with survivors and caregivers.

Matt Mauney, Content Writer at
Edited by

6 Cited Article Sources

The sources on all content featured in The Mesothelioma Center at include medical and scientific studies, peer-reviewed studies and other research documents from reputable organizations.

  1. Mayo Clinic. (2012). Mayo Clinic Cancer Center. Retrieved from:
  2. Mayo Clinic. (2012). Tradition & Heritage. Retrieved from:
  3. Schipper, P. H., Nichols, F. C., Thomse, K. M., Deschamps, C., Cassivi, S. D., Allen, M. S., & Pairolero, P.C. (2008). Malignant pleural mesothelioma: Surgical Management in 285 patients. Retrieved from:
  4. U.S. News and World Report. (2012). U.S. News Best Hospitals 2012-2013: the Honor Roll. Retrieved from:
  5. Mayo Clinic. (n.d.). Clinical Trials. Retrieved from:

Did this article help you?

Did this article help you?

Thank you for your feedback. Would you like to speak with a Patient Advocate?

Share this article

Last Modified June 22, 2020

Get Your Free Mesothelioma Guide Chat live with a patient advocate now