Good characteristics of a malignant brain tumour


About the research

What if you only had 15 months to live? Hard to imagine, right? Yet every day, around 1,000 people worldwide hear this news. The verdict: glioblastoma, a malignant brain tumor. Yet a small group of patients manages to survive for more than 10 years with such a brain tumor. Brecht Decraene (KU Leuven - UZ Leuven) wants to find out why, as unravelling this mystery might benefit all patients in the long run.

Brecht Decraene
KU Leuven

In the morning you wake up with a severe headache, and at the end of the day the doctor tells you that you have an estimated survival of 15 months. That’s how fast it can go when you‘ve been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor (called a glioblastoma). But why does a small fraction of people tend to survive for over ten years, and maybe even more important; can we eventually use these discoveries to let all patients live longer? That’s what neurosurgical trainee Brecht Decraene (UZ Leuven, KU Leuven/ Stand Up Against Cancer) is studying in his PhD research. “There definitely are some unique mechanisms in the tumors of long-term surviving patients. We just have to find them!”

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