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IBTA e-news

The monthly bulletin for our
international brain tumour community

January 2015

Treatment News

Cochrane Collaboration reviews irradiation-induced cognitive impairments in brain tumour patients.

The Cochrane Collaboration has published a systematic review that assesses the effectiveness of interventions for preventing and ameliorating radiotherapy-related cognitive impairments. Key review findings include that donepezil may help patients with primary brain tumours who receive radiation therapy. Read more
 

Better outcome in elderly patients with active treatment and more extensive brain tumour resection

Research published in Neuro-Oncology concludes that larger surgical resections are linked to improved outcomes in elderly glioma patients when compared to patients receiving partial resection or biopsy only. Read more (abstract). A separate study in Clinical Oncology links full, active treatment (chemotherapy, radiotherapy and/or surgery) to significantly longer survival in the elderly when compared to management for comfort measures only. Read more.
 

Czech Republic to get first specialist brain tumour centre

The Central Military Hospital in Prague and Charles University's 1st Faculty of Medicine have announced that a comprehensive centre for brain tumour treatment is to be built. It will be the first unit of its type to offer focused and systematic care for brain tumour patients. Read more.

Research roundup

Not just glucose: brain tumours also use acetate for fuel

In the latest edition of Cell, Researchers from UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, USA, have shown that brain tumours are capable of burning acetate for fuel. Glucose has previously been considered tumours’ main energy source but this finding helps explain why past attempts to control glucose levels have been ineffective at halting tumour growth. The finding offers a potential target for future drugs. Read more.
 

New temozolomide variant could treat drug-resistant glioblastoma

DP68 and DP86 are modified versions of temozolomide, the standard chemotherapeutic agent for glioblastoma. Research published in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics shows that DP68 stops the growth of glioblastoma cells that have become resistant to temozolomide. The authors conclude DP68 could be a new drug to target glioblastoma and other cancer types. Read more.
 

Researchers map brain tumour cells’ genetics to their drug resistance

Glioblastoma tumours are known to contain a wide variety of genetically different cell types (clones). A Canadian research team has shown how to isolate and analyse the behaviour of individual clones. They tested each cell’s response to different drugs and mapped this to each cell’s genetic profile. The study, published in PNAS, considers the potential for future patient-specific therapies based on an individual tumour's particular cellular make-up. Read more.
 

A mutation present in 75% of gliomas and melanomas now better understood

75% of glioblastomas and melanomas contain at least one mutation in a specific region of DNA: the hTERT promoter gene. A study published in PLoS One shows how mutations in this gene affect the shape of the hTERT promoter complex (part of the telomerase enzyme) and concludes that it could be a target for future therapies. Read more.
 

Breast cancer brain metastases: new perspectives

Approximately 10-30% of women with breast cancer are reported to go on to develop brain tumours. Dr Susan Bates discusses the pressing need for further research and current treatment dilemmas in this month’s The Oncologist, making reference to a small clinical trial which shows radiotherapy combined with capecitabine offers no survival advantage. Read more. Separate research published in Cancer Prevention Research shows the potential for galunisertib, a TGF-B kinase inhibitor, to reduce breast cancer brain metastases when tested in mice.
 

Turning brain tumour cells back into normal cells may be possible, early research suggests

A study investigating fruit fly cells has shown that modifying a single gene, Nerfin-1, causes mature neurons to revert into immature, cancer-like stem cells. The equivalent human gene, INSM1, is often faulty in childhood medulloblastoma and, if successfully targeted in humans, raises the possibility of halting and potentially reversing this process. Read more (media release).

Company news

CytRx awaits FDA decision after positive interim results

Interim results for a Phase II trial of aldoxorubicin, an anthracycline drug for glioblastoma that crosses the blood-brain barrier, have shown tumour shrinkage. One of the twelve trial patients has had a ‘complete response’ to treatment. An FDA decision is awaited regarding the lifting of a partial hold on the drug following a patient death in November 2014. Read more.
 

Non-invasive probe for brain tumour surgery to be tested

Canada-based Verisante Technology manufacture non-invasive handheld probes that identify skin cancer cells and bronchoscope probes that detect lung cancer cells using Raman spectroscopy technology. The company has announced that they will be working alongside Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, UK, and BC Cancer Agency, Canada, to investigate using this technology for a non-invasive probe that will help surgeons better identify the margins of a brain tumour during an operation. Read more.

IBTA News

IBTA advisor writes about four radical therapies that could treat his brain tumour

In last week’s New Scientist, IBTA’s Digital Technology Advisor, Dr Stuart Farrimond, writes about four new glioblastoma therapies (Nanotherm, NovoTTF-100A, DCVax and VB-111) and their potential to treat his brain tumour in the future. Read more.

Upcoming events: Feb-Mar 2015

Keep up to date with future scientific conferences and events on the IBTA website conferences page here. Below is a selection of forthcoming events:

International Childhood Cancer Awareness Day
3 February 2015 (10:30 – 12:30)
European Parliament, Brussels.

Cancer Drug Development Forum (CDDF) 3rd Paediatric Oncology Conference
5-6 February 2015
Vienna, Austria

The Royal College of Radiologists Neuro-Oncology Meeting
10 March 2015
Leeds, UK

21st Annual Blood-Brain Barrier Consortium Meeting
19-21 March 2015
Stevenson, Washington, USA

The Indian Society of Neurooncology Conference (ISNOCON)
26-29 March 2015
Kochi, Kerala, India

EORTC-EANO-ESMO 2015 Trends in Central Nervous System Malignancies
27-28 March 2015
Istanbul, Turkey

If you are aware of a brain tumour-relevant conference - including any patient conferences that we have not yet listed on the IBTA website then please let us know.

And finally...

Financial settlement made over chemical leak linked to brain tumour cases

Eight years of legal action have culminated in chemical company Rohm and Haas making an out of court settlement with 33 residents of McCullom Lake area, US, over a chemical leak that allegedly caused a series of brain tumour diagnoses. The size of the settlement has not been disclosed. Read more.
 

Asia’s tallest female basketball player, who has a brain tumour, is a sporting hero in Rajasthan

Diagnosed with a brain tumour eight months ago, 19-year-old Poonam Chaturvedi helped her team, Chhattisgarh women’s basketball team, win the 65th National Women Basketball Championship in India. With a height of 7 ft (2m 10cm), she scored 28 points against the favourites Delhi in a 84-75 win despite experiencing excruciating head pain throughout the game. Read more.
 

Longest ever cricket innings for brain tumour research is confirmed a World Record

Cricketer Dave Newman from Boston, UK, is confirmed World Record holder for batting non-stop for 48 hours. Raising over £14,000 (US$21,000) for brain tumour research after a friend was diagnosed with a brain tumour, his efforts hit the previous record of 26 hours, set in July 2013, out of the park. Read more.

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ABOUT THE IBTA


Who we are

The International Brain Tumour Alliance was established in 2005. It is a network of support, advocacy and information groups representing brain tumour patients and carers in different countries and also includes researchers, scientists, clinicians and allied health professionals who work in the field of brain tumours.
For more information, please visit www.theibta.org.  

 

Tell us what you think!

We love to hear from you if you have any news that you would like to share with the IBTA community. Just send us an email: chair@theibta.org.
We will do our best to relay as much information as possible to our subscribers via this monthly newsletter and our website. The selection of e-News entries is at the sole discretion of the editors.
Copyright © 2015 The International Brain Tumour Alliance, All rights reserved.

Disclaimer

The International Brain Tumour Alliance (IBTA) makes every effort to be accurate regarding the information contained in this e-newsletter (or in any documents, reports, notes or other material produced for and on behalf of the IBTA to which we provide a link in this e-newsletter).  However, the IBTA accepts no liability for any inaccuracies or omissions herein nor can it accept liability for any loss or damage resulting from any inaccuracy in this information or third party information such as information on websites to which we link. The information contained in this e-newsletter is for educational purposes only and should in no way be taken as a substitute for medical care nor is the information on the IBTA website meant to constitute medical advice or professional services. For medical care and advice, please contact your doctor.

Other websites linked from the IBTA e-newsletters are not under the control of the IBTA. Therefore we take no responsibility for their content. The IBTA has provided these links as a convenience to you and can in no way verify the information, quality, safety or suitability of linked websites.

Any company sponsorship of the IBTA's projects does not imply the IBTA's endorsement of any particular form or forms of therapy, treatment regimen or behaviour. (For further details of our sponsors, please see our Sponsorship Policy).

The views and opinions in the materials included in this e-newsletter may not necessarily be those of the International Brain Tumour Alliance.


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