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Glioblastoma Multiforme News: New Treatment For The Deadliest Brain Cancer Found

Update Date: Jan 03, 2017 10:00 AM EST

A team of researchers discovered a new drug agent for Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM), the deadliest type of brain cancer.

Scientists at the National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR) have found that genetic suppression of the melanoma differentiation-associated gene 9 (MDA-9/Suyntenin, sensitizes GBM to radiation. This helps improve the response of the disease to treatment in mice with brain tumors.

According to the study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, MDA-9/Suyntenin expression is increased in tumors and GBM cell lines. Moreover, when this pharmacological agent is combined with other treatments of GBM, it enhanced survival among laboratory mice. With additional chemistry, it may lead to a new drug treatment to prevent radiation-induced invasion of GBM Cells.

GBM is commonly treated with surgery and radiation. However, surgery increases the risk of relapse and this could be deadly. On the other hand, cells that survive radiation therapy may become more aggressive, leading to treatment resistance.

What Is Glioblastoma Multiforme?

According to the American Brain Tumor Association, Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is one of the deadliest forms of brain cancer. These tumors arise from astrocytes, the star-shaped cells that make up the supportive tissue of the brain. However, these tumors are highly malignant or cancerous since the cells reproduce rapidly and they're supported by a large network of blood vessels.

GBMs are usually found in the cerebral hemispheres of the brain but they could also occur in other parts of the brain and the spinal cord. The common symptoms associated with GBM are usually caused by increased intracranial pressure (ICP) like nausea, vomiting, drowsiness and headache. Other symptoms depend on the location of the tumor such as one-sided weakness in the body, speech or memory difficulties and visual changes.

"An exciting breakthrough for the treatment of GBM, this is about collaboration between two scientists on opposite coasts and shows how NFCR research may lead to tangible therapies for multiple cancers," Franklin Salisbury Jr. reported for the National Foundation for Cancer Research (NFCR).

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