New Treatment Strategy from MGH May Benefit Brain Cancer Patients

Researchers at NEC member Massachusetts General Hospital have recently uncovered a new treatment strategy to target brain tumors. The team led by Daniel Cahill, MD, PhD, Hiroaki Wakimoto, MD, PhD, and Julie Miller, MD, PhD, recently published their findings in Cancer Discovery, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Spinal cord and brain stem tumors–called gliomas–with mutations in the isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH) genes are the most common brain tumors diagnosed in younger adults aged 18 to 45 years. While patients may benefit from surgery and chemotherapy, these methods are not always curative. The research team has found that IDH mutations have a weakness making them particularly vulnerable to treatments that lower a vital metabolic molecule.

Dr. Miller, an instructor in neurology and a neuro-oncologist at Mass General, noted that there is potential for this new treatment.  “The long-term significance is that, based on our findings, they could be tested in individuals with IDH mutant gliomas, with a goal of hopefully improving outcomes in these patients,” she said.

The New England council commends the researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital for their discovery and dedication to finding a cure for brain cancer. Read more from the Massachusetts General Hospital press release.

 

 

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