Various studies explore the way in which asbestos causes mesothelioma. An expert in mesothelioma Dr. Michele Carbone who is also the director of thoracic oncology within the University of Hawaii Center did feature in co-writing a scientific piece in 2012 that detailed the various ways asbestos could damage an individual’s body.
In the publication, Dr. Michele Carbone said that asbestos may damage the body by creating inflammatory chemicals that bring about direct genetic damage. Of course, there are other theories that try to highlight how this substance is likely to cause malignant mesothelioma.2
The development of mesothelioma may not occur with little exposure to asbestos, it usually has to be a heavy, long-term exposure. That said, even minor exposures may be harmful. If products containing asbestos fibers are disturbed, they release the mineral into the air, and because there is a dose-response relationship for mesothelioma to asbestos, it means that exposing yourself to high doses of the substance leads to greater risks of having mesothelioma.
In the body, asbestos may build up in organs like the lungs and areas such as the abdomen because the fibers are sharp or even jagged shaped for them to be expelled out of the body. After a long time of having asbestos exposure, a person may begin to have cancerous changes that start in mesothelial cells comprising the tissue lining the heart, lungs, and abdomen.2