According to a story from PR Newswire, scientists are making significant progress in researching new treatments for glioblastoma, a rare and deadly brain cancer. A variety of drug companies are currently developing experimental treatments for this disease. Glioblastoma has a short survival time in most cases so improvements in treatment effectiveness are desperately needed. Thankfully, the latest research discoveries and trial findings suggest that these improvements will be on the way before too long.
Glioblastoma is a rare brain cancer. It is also the most aggressive cancer to originate in the brain. It is characterized by its rapid progression and poor response to most treatments. In most cases, the cause of glioblastoma is not known. A small number of cases evolve from another type of tumor called an astrocytoma. Risk factors for glioblastoma include genetic disorders such as Turcot syndrome and neurofibromatosis, exposure to pesticides, smoking, and a career in petroleum refining or rubber manufacture. Symptoms of glioblastoma include personality changes, headaches, memory loss, seizures, vomiting, and nausea; patients may lose consciousness in late stages. Treatment approaches include anticonvulsants, steroids, chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery. While a small number of patients can survive for several years, treatment is often ineffective, with the tumor relapsing quickly. Five year survival rate is only three percent. To learn more about glioblastoma, click here.
Recent Discoveries and Findings
A significant discovery related to glioblastoma is of a certain protein that is sometimes present in the disease that makes glioblastoma resistant to some of the most common chemotherapy agents. Now, a test has been developed that can detect this protein, allowing doctors to learn in advance to seek alternative approaches instead of wasting precious time with a regimen that won’t work.
The company CNS Pharmaceuticals also has interesting findings to report from a phase 1 clinical trial testing an investigational treatment for the cancer. 44 percent of patients that were treated saw meaningful improvements in progression free survival (PFS). Remarkably, one patient in the study saw a complete response and currently has no signs of the disease. While this is only one case, this is still a notable achievement in the treatment of the disease.
These findings all point to signs of progress in the treatment of glioblastoma.