Promising results in GBM trial and first clinical trial for adults with medulloblastoma

5 min read

Study using novel approach for glioblastoma treatment 'very promising'  Researchers have reported ‘very promising’ results of a Phase 1/2 clinical trial investigating the safety and effectiveness of a novel therapy which combines the injection of an oncolytic virus (virus that targets and kills cancer cells) directly into glioblastoma (GBM) tumours with intravenous immunotherapy. The results, published this week in Nature Medicine, show that for patients with recurrent GBM this combination therapy is safe, well tolerated and prolongs patient survival. The therapy had no major unexpected adverse effects and yielded a median survival of 12.5 months – considerably longer than the six to eight months typically seen with existing therapies.  

The first worldwide randomised trial in post-pubertal and adults newly diagnosed with medulloblastoma has enrolled its first two patients. The EORTC1634-BTG PersoMed I study is a European based study (50 sites in 9 countries) with an intergroup collaboration in Australia. It uses a targeted therapy in combination with radio-chemotherapy in a randomised setting, based on evaluation of the genetic subtype of medulloblastoma. The primary objective of the trial is to compare PFS (progression free survival) of a personalised intensity-modulated therapy (experimental arm; sonidegib) vs. standard therapy (modified NOA-07) in the Sonic Hedgehog (SHH)-dependent subgroup. It therefore aims to improve PFS, translating into a higher survival rate and clinically relevant functional improvements for patients. 


Analysis of recurrence probability following radiotherapy in patients with CNS WHO grade 2 meningioma using integrated molecular-morphologic classification This study retrospectively looked at a cohort of 44 patients with WHO grade 2 meningiomas following radiotherapy. For each person, they studied information such as comprehensive treatment protocols, follow-up data (e.g., treatment toxicities, pattern of recurrence) and integrated molecular data. The study, published in Neuro-Oncology Advances, concluded that integrated risk scoring can identify grade 2 meningioma patients at risk of relapse and dissemination following radiotherapy. Therapeutic management of WHO grade 2 meningiomas and future clinical trials should be adjusted according to the molecular risk-groups, and not rely on conventional CNS WHO grading alone. 

Brain cancer cells use mitochondria from the central nervous system to grow into aggressive tumours Researchers have identified horizontal mitochondria transfer from astrocytes to tumours cells as a mechanism that enhances tumourigenesis in glioblastoma (GBM). The study, published in Nature Cancer, demonstrated that the acquisition of astrocyte mitochondria drives an increase in mitochondrial respiration and upregulation of metabolic pathways linked to proliferation (cell division) and tumourigenicity. In conclusion, their study revealed a host-tumour interaction that drives proliferation and self-renewal of cancer cells, providing opportunities for therapeutic development.  


UCL Brain Cancer Seminar Series – Special seminar  

Date: Thursday 15 June 2023, 12-1pm BST, Location: 33 Queen Square Lecture Theatre (Basement) or Zoom (Link is shared after registration) 

Guest Presenter: Soma Sengupta – Harold C. Schott Endowed Brain Tumor Molecular Therapeutics Chair. 

To register, please visit the Eventbrite page. For further information about the UCL Brain Cancer Seminar Series, or if you would like to present at future seminars, please contact Morium Ali - BRC Neuro-Oncology Coordinator and follow them on Twitter 

Surveys that could be of interest to patients, loved ones and clinicians: 

  • Research on improving cognition in brain tumour patients following surgery – On behalf of Ali Ahmad, Neurosurgical trainee at the Walton Centre in Liverpool, this survey is for patients and their loved ones affected by a glioma-type tumour. It is designed to help guide the development of research into transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) following surgery. 
  • Invitation to take part in the design of two new cancer measures: the Cancer Treatment Satisfaction Questionnaire (CancerTSQ) and the Cancer Symptom Rating Questionnaire (CancerSRQ). On behalf of Professor Clare Bradley and her research team at Health Psychology Research Ltd, patients who have had a cancer diagnosis and have received treatment within the last 2 years (or are currently in treatment) are invited to take part.  Contact Michelle Taylor at, or call 01784 818888 for more information. 
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