Navigation Links
Henry Ford researchers identify genetic factors that may aid survival from brain cancer

DETROIT A Henry Ford Hospital research team has identified specific genes that may lead to improved survival of glioblastoma, the most common and deadly form of cancerous brain tumor.

The molecular data is expected to aid further research into genes that either help or impede the survival of patients diagnosed with the tumor, which can invade and rapidly grow in any part of the human brain.

"Studies such as ours that help define molecular alterations associated with short-term survival likely will help define the reasons why our current treatments don't succeed in these patients," says Dr. Steven Kalkanis, M.D., a neurosurgeon and surgical oncologist at Henry Ford's Hermelin Brain Tumor Center, and lead author of the study.

"As new mechanisms of resistance are revealed and targeted agents are developed to address these mechanisms, the number of long-term survivors should increase."

The Henry Ford study was published this month in the journal Clinical Neurology and Neurosurgery.

The study focused on 476 patients at Henry Ford Hospital who were diagnosed with glioblastoma from 1995 to 2008. Each was randomly chosen from the Hermelin Center's brain tumor tissue bank, which holds more than 4,100 unique patient brain tumor specimens.

The patients were evaluated as part of the international Cancer Genome Atlas, to which the Hermelin Brain Tumor Center at Henry Ford Hospital was a major contributor.

Besides noting a steady rise in survival rates over the 14 years examined in the study, researchers found that the median survival time among this group rose from 11.8 months in patients diagnosed from 1995 to 1999 to 15.9 months in those diagnosed from 2005 to 2008.

After categorizing each patient as a short (less than nine months), medium (nine to 24 months) or long-term (at least 24 months) survivor, the researchers looked for relationships between survival time and patient age, gender, functional impairment, increases in tumor size, surgery and chemotherapy.

They then performed a molecular analysis of each tumor specimen and explored its relationship to short- and long-term survival.

Besides confirming earlier studies that showed improved survival of glioblastoma as new techniques and medications were introduced, the new study found:

  • Survival times among Henry Ford patients were ahead of national glioblastoma survival trends.
  • Those age 70 and older included more short-term survivors that the younger age groups.
  • Gender differences were only detected when comparing the short- and medium-term survivors, with females more likely to be short-term survivors.
  • The tumor's location within the brain was not a significant factor in survival time.
  • Specific genes identified by the researchers may independently improve patient survival. The Henry Ford team concluded that more and ongoing research in this area is vital to understanding how to fight the usually fatal cancer tumor.

"Among the factors which are associated with increased survival of glioblastoma patients during the time period we studied," says Tom Mikkelsen, M.D., a neuro-oncologist and co-director of the Henry Ford's Hermelin Brain Tumor Center, "is the multidisciplinary care coordinated by a dedicated tumor board as common practice for managing brain tumor patients. New expertise in neurosurgery, molecular pathology and experimental therapeutics are critical and must be personalized for each patient."

While the medical community is engaged in an ongoing debate about the usefulness of such boards, Dr. Kalkanis says his team's research found that not only are they "warranted," but "necessary" for the future treatment of glioblastoma and continuing to improve patient quality of life and survival rates.


Contact: Dwight Angell
Henry Ford Health System

Related biology news :

1. Indiana University associate professor earns APSs Henry Pickering Bowditch Award
2. Oregon researchers capture handoff of tracked object between brain hemispheres
3. Homemade stink bug traps squash store-bought models, Virginia Tech researchers find
4. Ban cigarette filters to save the environment, suggest researchers
5. University of Toronto researchers find seeing Jesus in Toast phenomenon perfectly normal
6. Researchers find unique fore wing folding among Sub-Saharan African Ensign wasps
7. Penn State researchers believe ants can offer human-disease insights
8. Researchers find way to decrease chemoresistance in ovarian cancer
9. Researchers receive top honors for ecology paper
10. Researchers find the accelerator for molecular machines
11. Clemson researchers help track mysterious, endangered little devil
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/18/2015)... PHILADELPHIA , Nov. 18, 2015  As new ... in children, doctors and other healthcare providers face challenges ... counsel families and patients. In addition, as more children ... into a patient,s adulthood and old age. ... The Children,s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) . ...
(Date:11/17/2015)... Nov. 17, 2015  Vigilant Solutions announces today that ... Board of Directors. --> ... retiring from the partnership at TPG Capital, one of ... over $140 Billion in revenue.  He founded and led ... the TPG companies, from 1997 to 2013.  In his ...
(Date:11/12/2015)... CAMBRIDGE, Mass. , Nov. 12, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard for use ... chemical discovery information management tools. The partnership will ... share both biological and chemical research information internally ... tools will be used for managing the Institute,s ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... Israel , Nov. 30, 2015 BrainStorm Cell ... of adult stem cell technologies for neurodegenerative diseases, today announced ... awarded an additional grant of approximately $735,000 from ... grant, the second this year, brings the total awarded by ... (approximately NIS7 million).  ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... PA (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... Technical Program that includes over 2,000 technical presentations offered in symposia, oral ... chemistry and applied spectroscopy, covers a wide range of applications such as, but ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... November 26, 2015 --> ... specializing in imaging technologies, announced today that it has received ... of the Horizon 2020 European Union Framework Programme for Research ... clinical trial in breast cancer. , --> ... --> --> The study aims ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... -- 2 nouvelles études permettent d , ... entre les souches bactériennes retrouvées dans la plaque ... . Ces recherches  ouvrent une nouvelle voie ... efficace de l,un des problèmes de santé les ...    --> 2 nouvelles études permettent d ...
Breaking Biology Technology: