Brain Tumor Research
Glioma Brain Tumors Present Greatest Incidence Rate in Adults
About 15,000-17,000 new cases of malignant gliomas occur annually in the U.S. The median survival for all glioma patients remains less than one year. The purpose of the BTTC research, which began in 2007, was to investigate alternative approaches for malignant glioma treatment and as a result, improve a glioma patient's prognosis.
The current BTTC research examines two areas:
1) Using a multi-targeted therapy approach with new glioblastoma patients instead of a single agent, since single agent use has demonstrated limited impact. The approach here includes the combination of radiation therapy with temozolomide followed by a combination of bevacizumab and erlotinib.
- Temozolomide (Temodar), the current standard treatment for brain tumor, works by helping to kill cancer cells
- Bevacizumab (Avastin), a DNA-derived single-cell antibody, inhibits activity of vascular endothelial (blood vessels inside a body cavity) growth factor and metastatic progression. Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) is a major protein involved in regulating the differentiation and proliferation of vascular endothelial cells thus promoting the growth of new blood vessels. However, under certain circumstances, higher than normal levels of VEGF might play a role in cancerous processes or growth of tumors
- Erlotinib (Tarceva) is an antineoplastic, which inhibits the growth and spread of cancerous cells
2) Using temozolomide alone or in combination with thalidomide, isotretinion and/or celecoxib as post-radiation treatment of glioblastoma multiforme patients.
- Thalidomide (Thalomid™) may slow or stop the blood vessel growth in tumors
- Isotretinion (Accutane), related the vitamin A, may slow or stop cancer cell growth
- Celecoxib (Celebrex) helps in preventing development of some types of cancer