Fixing blood vessels to help CAR-T therapy and FDA approved treatment for children with low-grade glioma

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Correcting abnormalities in solid tumour’s blood vessels can improve efficacy of CAR-T cell therapy New research led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital suggest that drugs to correct abnormalities in a solid tumour’s blood vessels can improve the delivery and function of CAR-T cell therapy, which is particularly important for glioblastoma (GBM) tumours where CAR-T therapy has showed limited efficacy so far. The study, published in Journal for ImmunoTherapy for Cancer, found that treatment with an antibody against VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor) improved the infiltration of CAR-T cells into glioblastoma tumours in mice. The treatment also inhibited tumour growth and prolonged survival.  

Optimising biomarkers for accurate ependymoma diagnosis, prognostication and stratification within International Clinical Trials: A BIOMECA study Researchers in this study aimed to establish the most accurate and reproducible techniques for measuring key ependymoma biomarkers using 147 consecutive samples from SIOP Ependymoma II trial participants enrolled in the pan-European “Biomarkers of Ependymoma in Children and Adolescents (BIOMECA)” study. They were able to show that H3K27me3 IHC is both accurate and reproducible for the diagnosis of PFA ependymoma in a clinical trial setting.  

Targeting unfolded protein response using albumin-encapsulated nanoparticles attenuates temozolomide resistance in glioblastoma A chemical known as Protein Disulphide Isomerase (PDI) is highly expressed in glioblastomas (GBM) which have acquired resistance to temozolomide (TMZ). This study, published in the British Journal of Cancer, demonstrated that suppressing PDI with CCF642, a small molecule inhibitor, significantly enhances the cytotoxic effect of TMZ on GBM cells.  The research also showed that the inhibition of PDI was able to sensitise GBM cells that were initially resistant to TMZ treatment, demonstrating that targeting PDI is a promising rationale to overcome chemoresistance.   


FDA approves dabrafenib with trametinib for paediatric patients with low-grade glioma with a BRAF V600E mutation The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved dabrafenib with trametinib for paediatric patients 1 year of age and older with low-grade glioma (LGG) with a BRAF V600E mutation who require systemic therapy. This is the first FDA approval of a systemic therapy for first-line treatment of paediatric patients with this type of glioma.  Information on how the treatment works and the phase 2 clinical trial results can be found here.  


Will Immunotherapy Become a Standard of Care for Glioblastoma?  An interesting review of immunotherapy treatments for glioblastoma tumours. Published for OncLive®, the article focuses on both the theory behind the treatments as well as the emerging clinical trial data.  

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