13 March 2009
German and Swiss researchers have demonstrated a two–drug combination that produces critical improvement in specific brain tumour cases
The researchers treated 39 patients diagnosed with gliablastoma, the most aggressive and the most common brain tumour before announcing the result of the ‘Magic’ potion, reports IANS.
The patients survived an average of 23 months as compared to the average survival rate of 14.6 months in such cases under standard therapy, the researchers revealed.
Left untreated, glioblastomas can prove fatal within a few weeks and the disease is still untreatable–something that even the new combination therapy cannot change.
However, Bonn University Professor Ulrich Herrlinger speaks of an outstanding success as this unusually manifest extension of the survival time has surprised even us.
“Our results offer the opportunity to improve our grip on this aggressive form of cancer. Now, further investigations involving a larger number of patients are needed to optimise this therapy. Planning for this is already in hand in Bonn,” he added.
Until now, doctors have treated glioblastomas using radiotherapy with chemotherapy. The ‘Gold standard’ in this case for the last few years has been the active agent temozolomide.
“This is still celebrated as the most important breakthrough in the treatment of glioblastomas,” he said.
The researchers combined this preparation with the drug lomustine and also gave the patients radiotherapy.