UW clinical trial tests new way to treat glioblastoma

UW Health

MADISON, Wis. – A clinical trial now open at UW Health | Carbone Cancer Center uses a patient’s dying tumor cells to try to teach their immune system to find and destroy cancer cells following surgery for a type of brain cancer called glioblastoma.

The Carbone Cancer Center is one of about two dozen cancer centers testing a new investigational immunotherapy approach to treating one of the deadliest cancers.

Glioblastoma tends to recur and patients live, on average, only 15 months after diagnosis and treatment with brain surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. However, a subset of patients in a phase 1b clinical trial of this approach, which was designed to test the safety of the treatment, lived an average of 38 months when they received the highest dose of immunotherapy. The phase 2b clinical trial plans to enroll 93 newly diagnosed patients.

“We’re really excited to offer our patients the chance to test this new investigational approach to treat newly diagnosed glioblastoma,” said Dr. Ankush Bhatia, assistant professor of neurology, and a neuro-oncologist and co-leader of the neuro-oncology clinical trials program at Carbone. “The aim of this personalized medicine method is to teach the patient’s immune system to recognize and destroy their own cancer cells.” Read more…