Combination Therapy Best to Treat Aggressive Brain Cancer


BrainCancerMost Brain Cancers are treated with Radiation Therapy, but the cancer cells can repair themselves in order to live on.

Researchers at Sidney’s Kimmel Cancer Center recently tested a strategy that combines radiotherapy with a drug that shuts down the ability of tumours  to mend themselves.

According to the research, published in the Journal of Neuro-Oncology, results of the study are such that a more comprehensive, phase 2 clinical trial should be conducted to test the combination therapy for aggressive, recurrent brain cancer.

We saw synergy between radiotherapy and the agent, panobinostat. Our findings suggest panobinostat makes radiotherapy much more effective,” says the study’s senior author, Yaacov R. Lawrence, M.D., of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Thomas Jefferson University’s Sidney Kimmel Medical College.

All 12 patients tested in the study had high-grade gliomas that had recurred after initial radiotherapy. Eight patients had recurrent glioblastoma, and four had recurrent anaplastic astrocytoma.

These two forms of aggressive brain cancer represent almost 70% of newly diagnosed gliomas, which are diagnosed in about 10,000 patients annually. Despite response to initial radiation, most patients relapse within two years and overall survival is then limited to a year or less.

There is no standard treatment for recurrent high-grade gliomas. At Jefferson, we have a lot of experience with offering a second course of radiation after a patient relapses, in order to increase survival, but we are excited by the promise of a targeted agent that makes initial and repeat radiotherapy more effective,” says co-author Adam Dicker, M.D., Ph.D., FASTRO, Chair and Professor of Radiation Oncology, Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at the Sidney Kimmel Medical College.

Panobinostat, approved for use in 2015 for treatment of multiple myeloma, is being tested in a variety of other cancers. It is a histone deacetylase inhibitor that has been shown to modify expression of about eight percent of RNA molecules produced from genes. Modifying RNA changes protein production, unsetting cancer growth. The drug also turns off RAD51, a DNA repair enzyme, Dr. Dicker says.

Researchers found that the highest dose of panobinostat tested in patients was well tolerated, and they observed improved progression-free survival and overall survival.

The intent of this study was not to demonstrate benefit of the combination therapy, but to test safety. Still, we did note promising activity, which must be validated in further studies,” Dr. Lawrence says.

 

 

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About LFCT

This is a blog about CHILDHOOD CANCER and CHILDHOOD CANCER AWARENESS Little Fighters Cancer Trust is a non-profit organisation that offers support and aid to Children with Cancer and their families. When a child is diagnosed with cancer it affects the whole family. One of the parents, usually the mother, must give up their job to care for the child and this creates financial problems for the family. In South Africa especially the majority of these families are not well-to-do; many of them are rural. A diagnosis of cancer can wipe out any family’s finances, let alone a poor family. The costs of special medications, special diets, hospital stays, transport to and from the hospital or clinic and accommodation and food costs for the mother who spends most of the time at her child’s bedside are astronomical. These are the people and problems that fall through the cracks, and these are the people that Little Fighters Cancer Trust has pledged to help in any way possible. LFCT takes a holistic approach to assisting the Children with Cancer and their Families, with the main aim to be the preservation of individual dignity and pride. Little Fighters Cancer Trust also focuses on promotion and advocacy of National Childhood Cancer Awareness in an effort to increase awareness of Early Warning Signs of Childhood Cancer. This would result in earlier diagnosis, giving the Child with Cancer more of a chance at Treatment and Survival. See "About" for more Background info

Posted on 29 August, 2016, in Blog, Cancer Treatments, Medical Treatments, Research and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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