Alfacell Corp., the New Jersey pharmaceutical company, got enough patients to go ahead with phase IIIb testing on Onconase, (ranpirnase). Another step in the long process toward getting approval for that drug, which is promising in mesothelioma treatment. The drug companies sometimes target mesothelioma in their development process even though it is a rare form of cancer. The reason is that the FDA (and equivalents in other countries) are thought to be more amenable to drug approval for diseases with no other good treatments. And then if they get approved for mesothelioma and establish a safety profile in that cancer, the hope is that the FDA will approve the drug for other, more common cancers.