Research and Clinical Trials
More than 24,000 Americans were diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor in 2013, according to the American Brain Tumor Association. The most common of these malignant tumors is a glioblastoma, a highly aggressive tumor that is rarely curable.
The Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program at Mount Sinai is a leader in laboratory research that advances treatments for patients with high-grade brain tumors. The main focus of our laboratory is to investigate new therapies that can kill brain tumors without interfering with healthy tissue in the brain.
Led by Isabelle M. Germano, MD, Professor of Neurosurgery, Neurology, and Oncological Sciences at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, the program has made significant advances in the area of neuro-oncology. We were the first investigators in New York to use the adenovirus to kill tumor cells in patients with glioblastomas and to identify embryonic stem cells that could be used in gene therapy.
Our team collaborates with other specialties throughout Mount Sinai to engineer stem cells specific to each patient to be used as adjuvant therapy for brain tumors (or additional therapy applied to primary treatments to prevent the cancer’s return).The goal is to move this translational research from the bench to the bedside in patients with high-grade tumors.
Brain Tumor Clinical Trials
With support from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), private foundations, and industry, the Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program is investigating promising new modalities and compounds to kill brain tumor cells.
One new therapy being investigated is the NovoTTF-100A System (a portable brain cancer treatment device) in combination with temozolomide, an oral medication that inhibits cell growth in adult patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma. Patients are enrolled in the clinical trial following surgery and radiation therapy for a glioblastoma.
The brain device comes in the form of a cap worn by patients and is designed to control regrowth of glioblastomas. Patients may remove the cap to shave the scalp or to shower, and wear them under a baseball cap, wig, or scarf. For recurring tumors, median survival is increased compared to other available treatments.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the NovoTTF-100A System for use as a treatment for patients 22 years of age or older with glioblastoma confirmed through brain imaging and subsequent biopsy, or recurrence in the cerebral region of the brain in patients who have received chemotherapy.
Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program
5 East 98th Street, 7th Floor
New York, NY 10029
To speak with someone about open brain tumor clinical trials, please contact John Percival Pena, NP, at 212-241-6252.