General Information on Brain Tumors
Malignant brain tumors account for a significant portion of solid tumor mortality that has devastating effects on the economy and society. There are approximately 200,000 brain tumors diagnosed in North America each year, of which 50,000 originate in the brain and 150,000 metastasize from extracranial tumors. Brain tumors are the leading cause of cancer-related death in children. Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common primary brain tumor, claiming over 12,000 lives annually in the United States. Despite recent progress in surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, the two-year survival rate for GBM patients remains below 27%. The side effects from this kind of combination therapy vary, but can be severe and often debilitating. However, other primary brain tumors such as meningioma can typically be treated successfully with surgery alone. To learn more about the different kinds of brain tumors it may be helpful to visit webpages of the various government agencies and private brain tumor foundations (see links below).
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The long-term goal of our research is to change these disappointing statistics by developing safe, less toxic, therapies for treatment of the most malignant forms of brain cancer. We are actively investigating several experimental therapies because it is most likely that a combination of several agents will someday lead to a cure for malignant brain tumors.
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