Because of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), which prevents many IV-administered drugs from penetrating the blood vessel walls sufficiently in order to get into the brain, no one knows for sure if current drugs actually get into the brain after IV infusion.
"This new technique may be a way to get through that barrier and deliver higher doses of drug to the tumor with less toxicity to the patient," says Dr. Boockvar.
To deliver the drug, neurosurgeons direct a hair-thin microcatheter through blood vessels in the body, via the carotid artery running up the neck, and then into the smaller arteries deep in the brain. Upon arriving at the tumor site, a drug to open the blood-brain barrier is injected. After the BBB is temporarily opened -- a window of time lasting approximately five minutes -- the chemotherapeutic agent Avastin is injected directly into the malignant tumor.
Participants in the trial will be given varying doses of the drug in order to test which dose is best tolerated. Following this Phase I trial, the researchers plan to immediately begin a Phase II trial to test the technique's efficacy.
"This potential new drug delivery system demonstrates translational research from the Brain and Spine Center of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center at its best," says Dr. Philip E. Stieg, chairman of neurological surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College and neurosurgeon-in-chief at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell. "If proven successful, it is a promising move forward for patients dealing with resistant brain tumors."
The current standard of care is to give patients with GBM the drug bevacizumab (Avastin) intravenou
|Contact: John Rodgers|
New York- Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center/Weill Cornell Medical College