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FancyJams t1_iybaf98 wrote

The last line of the title is misleading, as chemo is already possible and is commonly used to treat glios.

The article indicates the primary benefit is that the treatment negates the need for surgery and radiation, and may increase the efficacy of chemo. This may be especially beneficial to patients who present with non operable tumors.

This is certainly progress, as the recovery from surgery and then the side effects of radiation are both brutal. However I would guess that for patients with operable tumors this won't increase survival rates.

I was told by a leading glio specialist at a top hospital that back in the day they tried removing entire lobes of the brain to remove a glioblastoma, and it would eventually just come back somewhere else in the brain anyway.

All the current treatment is just to try and extend the incredibly short life expectancy.

Source: My mom was diagnosed with a glioblastoma a few months ago


alxmartin t1_iy9hff9 wrote

Hope this doesn’t disappear like so many other break throughs.


boonepii t1_iy9olvj wrote

Well solving the underlying issue isn’t as profitable as treating it

Edit: profit is what gets investors. Recurring revenue is what every CEO wants. CEO’s are now MBA graduates. MBA’s drive profit driven results. Recurring revenue is more profitable, less risky, and is the current Wall Street buzz word.

Your healthcare is now being lead by MBA’s. Ever wonder why nurses are fleeing and under staffed constantly.

Innovation requires investment. Investment requires profit. Recurring revenue is the largest trend and is more profitable than a single pill cure.

Therefore the investment gets steered towards future profit, not what’s best for mankind.


Political_Fishbulb t1_iy9q5kv wrote

This is a cop-out that ignores that what works in lab environments or on mouse models, like so many breakthroughs, often doesn't translate to actual humans fighting real cancer.

People with brain cancer die. Quickly. Dead patients aren't worth anything to pharma companies either.


EnlightenedMind_420 t1_iy9zhwb wrote

Is there any good understanding of why what so often works on mice in lab settings doesn’t actually work on humans in the real world?


boonepii t1_iyayd2p wrote

I wish I agreed with you. I mean sure, yoir not wrong.

But innovation is being directed by profit. It’s what capitalism is. The profit is Recurring Revenue, not a single event. Managing symptoms is way more profitable than healing. It’s basic business principles.

This is what is running our healthcare. MBA’s are now hospital CEO’s. Maximize revenue and minimize expenses is what MBA’s do.


One_Idea_239 t1_iy9rnn7 wrote

Idiotic comment, no one knows what cause gbm, it is a truly horrible disease that kills horrifyingly quickly, my wife lost a friend to this earlier this year. Less than 6 months from diagnosis and nothing could be done. If there is a treatment that can be made then it will be worth every single penny/cent it costs


fffyhhiurfgghh t1_iy9xvvn wrote

Brain cancer kills people quickly, there isn’t some cure waiting on the shelf but it’s just not profitable. It’s a very complicated place to deliver chemotherapy to. Do you even realize how much they could charge for something like that?


boonepii t1_iyaxhrt wrote

Highest cost for a single treatment is $3.5M because the monthly recurring treatment is $120k.


ShePlaysMindGames t1_iybjh9l wrote

This is an “ongoing profitable treatment” if you have to look at it through that stupid lens.

Glioblastoma currently has a life expectancy in months, not years. The damned article says “making chemotherapy possible” yet you want to make it fit in your stupid pigeonhole.


Bubbagumpredditor t1_iy9qxpi wrote

I always wondered why something like injecting acid or something into the center of a tumor wasn't a viable way of fighting it. I mean, when there's no other way.


Honjin t1_iyae025 wrote

Runoff and contamination. It can sometimes be very difficult to predict where something like acid would end up in the body over time, and it could cause later issues. That's runoff. Contamination is from trying to determine what the type of acid base you're using is going to turn into after it reacts with whatever you're trying to kill. Maybe it breaks down into something even more hazardous than the tumor. Maybe the breakdown of parts of the tumor cause it to metastasize.

The point at which I'd think these risks are acceptable (it will vary based on type and location of tumor), is probably far past the point that surgery would do a better job removing the tumor.


Ixneigh t1_iyb88oq wrote

Why can’t they use a colliding beam method where they target the tumor in three D and then zap it with multiple gentler beams?


Fluffy-Jackfruit-930 t1_iydj5wd wrote

That is what is done for radiotherapy. Modern techniques such as conformal radiotherapy do exactly that, re-shaping and re-directing the beam to avoid sensitive off-target areas and maximise dose to the target where all the beams collide. In practice, there is still cobsiderable off-target exposure.

For very high precision there are variants such as stereotactic radiosurgery, where up to 200 separate beams target a small area allow extremely high dose at the target with less off target dose. However, stereotactic techniques are limited in target size, and high grade gliomas are usually too large to be practically treated this way.

he other problem with gliomas is that they infiltrate, sending out microscopic "tendrils' into the adjacent brain tissue which can be much larger than the visible tumour. This is a major provlem for treatment as the tumor can recur elsewhere in the brain.


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3deal t1_iy9sl1c wrote

How manu years before this methode is generalized ?


MisterVelveteen t1_iya2sts wrote

Definitely nice to see there's another potential alternative to radiation-beam therapy, which doesn't just hit the sensitive tissues at the target area but also everything in the path of the beam.

Additionally, it's interesting to think that the byproduct of disrupting the blood-brain barrier might have even more widespread clinical applications than the intended procedure.


FancyJams t1_iyb99ag wrote

This is not accurate, radiation is modeled and planned in 3D and only affects the targeted tissue. It is much more focused than it was even a decade ago. However it still causes irritation and swelling.

My mom, who was a radiation therapist her whole career, is currently in radiation and chemo for a glioblastoma. She's been discussing the treatment protocol with her former colleagues and it's already completely different from when she retired not long ago.


grst0801 t1_iybdqhj wrote

This is wrong. There are multiple ways to utilize radiation, but all involve spillover into outside areas. Whether it's photon or proton therapy you're going to have side effects, if it's in the brain, you're going to have serious side effects.

Source: I am dying and currently undergoing brain/spine proton radiation therapy at the Mayo clinic.


FancyJams t1_iybh2g9 wrote

We were told that the side effects were due to the targeted tissue being irritated, but I'm certainly not an expert and perhaps I'm wrong about it also affecting adjacent tissue.

I'm so sorry for what you're going through, I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

My mom's cognitive symptoms from the radiation are terrible and we don't know if or when they will improve.


grst0801 t1_iybr4ki wrote

Its all good, it may also depend on the type of radiation. They can do a pretty good job with proton based focal radiation, but there is still spillover. It has gotten to a point in which if they can spare the hippocampus, they can irradiate the brain repeatedly. There are some side effects where the beam passes through (hair loss, irritation, cell death, etc.) regardless of the type of treatment they're doing. Essentially they are using a proton/photon as a bowling ball, causing chaos as it passes through molecules, spinning off electrons which create free radicals that will (hopefully) blow out the DNA of the cells they run into.

There are some promising trials out there focused on getting treatment through the blood-brain barrier. In the future, maybe in just a few years, you'll start to see some spine catheter trials to directly get chemo drugs and/or antibody conjugate into the CSF. If you can just hang on, there is reason to hope.


MisterVelveteen t1_iybzehi wrote

I guess you can tell that to my personal acquaintance with permanent vocal chord damage from beam therapy for glioblastoma, they'll be stoked to hear I'm wrong.


Nubeel t1_iydha12 wrote

Didn't Dr. Frankenstein already pioneer this a hundred years ago?


TigerKingz t1_iyahnf1 wrote

The before and after pics are little disturbing for some reason


Cindexxx t1_iyaq7ol wrote

God that's what I thought too. But I'm pretty sure they're different people.