The mesothelium is a membrane surrounding organs such as the lungs, the intestines and the heart. Tumors of the mesothelium are called mesotheliomas. The majority of mesotheliomas arise in the membrane around the lungs and are directly caused by exposure to asbestos. The tumor often only arises several decades after the exposure. Within CRIG, prof. Karim Vermaelen performs research into mesothelioma.