Posted on Jun 11, 2018, 4 p.m.
International A team of renowned neurologist, pathologists, and bioinformaticians have unveiled a glioblastoma atlas making headway against the highly aggressive brain cancer. Glioblastoma is the most common form of cancer which is most often malignant in adults, details on the Ivy Glioblastoma Atlas as published in Science.
The Ivy Glioblastoma Atlas comprehensively maps out information on anatomic and genetic bases of the disease at cellular and molecular levels associated with the glioblastoma, created to assist all researchers and physicians improve diagnostics and treatment of the disease including finding new targets.
Goals in the process of creating the Atlas were: to make all relevant data fully available and transparent; to create a map of all different cells and potential molecular changes that occur; and to build an improved understanding of how much heterogeneity can be found within these tumors.
Radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy are the current standard treatment for glioblastoma patients. Not all tumors are the same, they have different molecular changes, this atlas may be able to provide separate tailored treatments to tackle each one. Identifying unique features of tumors that may benefit from targeted therapies the Atlas may enable patients to experience benefits of precision medicine increasing chances of better treatment and survival.
Specialized pathologists typically excise glioblastoma tumors, who then confirm presence of malignancy and provide details about characteristics of the tumors. The team developed a study design to assess concordance between features outlined in glioblastoma tumors by expert pathologists and automated machine learning techniques; concordance rates were found to be very high at 85-95%.
Cases of medulloblastoma malignant brain tumors were cited as comparison, which has been grouped into 4 distinct molecularly defined groups that have specific drugs that work best within each subtype. Researchers hope that this new Atlas can replicate success with medulloblastoma in glioblastoma.
As the Atlas has new information added to it and associated databases for clinical and genomic data increase, it is believed the Atlas will continue to grow in value as use useful treatment and research tool, allowing for more accurate diagnostics and treatments, including potential generation of life extending hypotheses about causes and treatments.
Materials provided by:
Note: Content may be edited for style and length.