A new drug could help increase the effectiveness of radiation therapy for patients with glioblastoma multiforme, the most deadly form of brain cancer. The ATM kinase inhibitor, in combination with radiation therapy, helped significantly extend survival rates in mouse models of GBM.
Scientists have long believed that glioblastoma multiforme, the most aggressive type of primary brain tumor, begins in glial cells that make up supportive tissue in the brain or in neural stem cells. Researchers found that the tumors can originate from other types of differentiated cells in the nervous system, including cortical neurons.
“We identified a subset of brain tumor cells that are slower growing or remain at rest, and appear to be the source of cancer recurrence after standard therapy in which the drug temozolomide is given to stop the tumor’s growth,” said Dr. Luis Parada. “Current therapy targets fast-growing tumor cells but not those responsible for new tumors. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first identification of a cancer stem-like cell in a spontaneously forming tumor inside a mammal.”
A new probe developed uses an innovative fluorescence-reading technology to help brain surgeons distinguish cancerous tissue from normal tissue. The probe tool, now already in use at the Cancer Center for brain surgery, may one day be used for surgeries for a variety of cancers.
Scientists showed in mice that disabling a gene linked to a common pediatric tumor disorder, neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), made stem cells from one part of the brain proliferate rapidly. But the same genetic deficit had no effect on stem cells from another brain region.
Researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have developed what they believe to be the first clinical application of a new imaging technique to diagnose brain tumors. The unique test could preclude the need for surgery in patients whose tumors are located in areas of the brain too dangerous to biopsy. This new magnetic resonance spectroscopy [...]