bims-malgli Biomed News
on Biology of malignant gliomas
Issue of 2024‒06‒09
ten papers selected by
Oltea Sampetrean, Keio University

  1. Clin Cancer Res. 2024 Jun 05.
      PURPOSE: Patients with glioblastoma (GBM) have a dismal prognosis. While DNA alkylating agent temozolomide (TMZ) is mainstay of chemotherapy, therapeutic resistance develops rapidly in patients. Base excision repair inhibitor TRC102 (methoxyamine) reverses TMZ resistance in preclinical glioma models. We sought to investigate efficacy and safety of oral TRC102+TMZ for recurrent GBM (rGBM).PATIENTS AND METHODS: A pre-registered (NCT02395692), non-randomized, multicenter, phase 2 clinical trial (BERT) was planned and conducted through the Adult Brain Tumor Consortium (ABTC-1402). Arm 1 included bevacizumab-naïve GBM patients at first recurrence, with primary endpoint of response rates. If sufficient activity was identified, a second arm was planned in bevacizumab-refractory patients. Secondary endpoints were overall survival (OS), progression-free survival (PFS), PFS at six months (PFS-6), and toxicity.
    RESULTS: Arm 1 enrolled 19 patients with median of two treatment cycles. Objective responses were not observed, hence, arm 2 did not open. Median OS was 11.1 months (95%CI 8.2-17.9). Median PFS was 1.9 months (95%CI 1.8-3.7). PFS-6 was 10.5% (95%CI 1.3-33.1%). Most toxicities were Grade 1-2, with two Grade 3 lymphopenias and one Grade 4 thrombocytopenia. Two patients with PFS ≥17 months and OS >32 months were deemed 'extended survivors'. RNA sequencing of tumor tissue, obtained at diagnosis, demonstrated significantly enriched signatures of DNA damage response (DDR), chromosomal instability (CIN70, CIN25), and cellular proliferation (PCNA25) in 'extended survivors'.
    CONCLUSIONS: These findings confirm safety and feasibility of TRC102+TMZ for rGBM patients. They also warrant further evaluation of combination therapy in biomarker-enriched trials enrolling GBM patients with baseline hyperactivated DDR pathways.
  2. Nat Commun. 2024 Jun 06. 15(1): 4698
      Given the marginal penetration of most drugs across the blood-brain barrier, the efficacy of various agents remains limited for glioblastoma (GBM). Here we employ low-intensity pulsed ultrasound (LIPU) and intravenously administered microbubbles (MB) to open the blood-brain barrier and increase the concentration of liposomal doxorubicin and PD-1 blocking antibodies (aPD-1). We report results on a cohort of 4 GBM patients and preclinical models treated with this approach. LIPU/MB increases the concentration of doxorubicin by 2-fold and 3.9-fold in the human and murine brains two days after sonication, respectively. Similarly, LIPU/MB-mediated blood-brain barrier disruption leads to a 6-fold and a 2-fold increase in aPD-1 concentrations in murine brains and peritumoral brain regions from GBM patients treated with pembrolizumab, respectively. Doxorubicin and aPD-1 delivered with LIPU/MB upregulate major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I and II in tumor cells. Increased brain concentrations of doxorubicin achieved by LIPU/MB elicit IFN-γ and MHC class I expression in microglia and macrophages. Doxorubicin and aPD-1 delivered with LIPU/MB results in the long-term survival of most glioma-bearing mice, which rely on myeloid cells and lymphocytes for their efficacy. Overall, this translational study supports the utility of LIPU/MB to potentiate the antitumoral activities of doxorubicin and aPD-1 for GBM.
  3. Neurooncol Adv. 2024 Jan-Dec;6(1):6(1): vdae073
      Background: Patients with grade 2 glioma exhibit highly variable survival. Re-irradiation for recurrent disease has limited mature clinical data. We report treatment results of pulsed reduced-dose rate (PRDR) radiation for patients with recurrent grade 2 glioma.Methods: A retrospective analysis of 58 patients treated with PRDR from 2000 to 2021 was performed. Radiation was delivered in 0.2 Gy pulses every 3 minutes encompassing tumor plus margin. Survival outcomes and prognostic factors on outcome were Kaplan-Meier and Cox regression analyses.
    Results: The median survival from the date of initial surgery was 8.6 years (95% CI: 5.5-11.8 years). 69% of patients showed malignant transformation to grade 3 (38%) or grade 4 (31%) glioma. Overall survival following PRDR was 12.6 months (95% CI: 8.3-17.0 months) and progression-free survival was 6.2 months (95% CI: 3.8-8.6 months). Overall response rate based on post-PRDR MRI was 36%. In patients who maintained grade 2 histology at recurrence, overall survival from PRDR was 22.0 months with 5 patients remaining disease-free, the longest at 8.2 and 11.4 years. PRDR was generally well tolerated.
    Conclusions: To the best of our knowledge, this is the largest reported series of patients with recurrent grade 2 gliomas treated with PRDR radiation for disease recurrence. We demonstrate promising survival and acceptable toxicity profiles following re-irradiation. In the cohort of patients who maintain grade 2 disease, prolonged survival (>5 years) is observed in selected patients. For the entire cohort, 1p19q codeletion, KPS, and longer time from initial diagnosis to PRDR were associated with improved survival.
    Keywords:  brain tumor; glioma; outcomes; pulsed reduced-dose rate; radiation
  4. Neuro Oncol. 2024 Jun 01. pii: noae091. [Epub ahead of print]
      BACKGROUND: The incidence of leptomeningeal metastases (LM) has been reported diversely. This study aimed to investigate the incidence, risk factors, and prognosis of LM in patients with IDH-wildtype glioblastoma.METHODS: A total of 828 patients with IDH-wildtype glioblastoma were enrolled between 2005 and 2022. Baseline preoperative MRI including post-contrast fluid-attenuated inversion recovery (FLAIR) was used for LM diagnosis. Qualitative and quantitative features, including distance between tumor and subventricular zone (SVZ) and tumor volume by automatic segmentation of the lateral ventricles and tumor, were assessed. Logistic analysis of LM development was performed using clinical, molecular, and imaging data. Survival analysis was performed.
    RESULTS: The incidence of LM was 11.4%. MGMTp unmethylation (odds ratio [OR] = 1.92, P = 0.014), shorter distance between tumor and SVZ (OR = 0.94, P = 0.010), and larger contrast-enhancing tumor volume (OR = 1.02, P < 0.001) were significantly associated with LM. The overall survival (OS) was significantly shorter in patients with LM than in those without (log-rank test; P < 0.001), with median OS of 12.2 and 18.5 months, respectively. Presence of LM remained an independent prognostic factor for OS in IDH-wildtype glioblastoma (hazard ratio = 1.42, P = 0.011), along with other clinical, molecular, imaging, and surgical prognostic factors.
    CONCLUSION: The incidence of LM is high in patients with IDH-wildtype glioblastoma, and aggressive molecular and imaging factors are correlated with LM development. The prognostic significance of LM based on post-contrast FLAIR imaging suggests acknowledgement of post-contrast FLAIR as a reliable diagnostic tool for clinicians.
    Keywords:  Glioblastoma; Leptomeningeal Metastases; Magnetic Resonance Imaging; Prognosis; Risk Factors
  5. Neuro Oncol. 2024 Jun 04. pii: noae100. [Epub ahead of print]
    Keywords:  epigenetics; extent of resection; glioblastoma; intraoperative diagnostics; surgery
  6. Cell Rep. 2024 Jun 05. pii: S2211-1247(24)00637-5. [Epub ahead of print]43(6): 114309
      Glioblastomas are the most common malignant brain tumors in adults; they are highly aggressive and heterogeneous and show a high degree of plasticity. Here, we show that methyltransferase-like 7B (METTL7B) is an essential regulator of lineage specification in glioblastoma, with an impact on both tumor size and invasiveness. Single-cell transcriptomic analysis of these tumors and of cerebral organoids derived from expanded potential stem cells overexpressing METTL7B reveal a regulatory role for the gene in the neural stem cell-to-astrocyte differentiation trajectory. Mechanistically, METTL7B downregulates the expression of key neuronal differentiation players, including SALL2, via post-translational modifications of histone marks.
    Keywords:  CP: Cancer; CP: Stem cell research; METTL7B; SALL2; cancer stem cells; cerebral organoids; epigenetics; glioblastoma; in vivo models; lineage specification; neural stem cells; single-cell transcriptomic
  7. Neuro Oncol. 2024 Jun 03. pii: noae101. [Epub ahead of print]
      BACKGROUND: Formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissue slides are routinely used in cancer diagnosis, clinical decision-making, and stored in biobanks, but their utilization in Raman spectroscopy-based studies has been limited due to the background coming from embedding media.METHODS: Spontaneous Raman spectroscopy was used for molecular fingerprinting of FFPE tissue from 46 patient samples with known methylation subtypes. Spectra were used to construct tumor/non-tumor, IDH1WT/IDH1mut, and methylation-subtype classifiers. Support vector machine and random forest were used to identify the most discriminatory Raman frequencies. Stimulated Raman spectroscopy was used to validate the frequencies identified. Mass spectrometry of glioma cell lines and TCGA were used to validate the biological findings.
    RESULTS: Here we develop APOLLO (rAman-based PathOLogy of maLignant glioma) - a computational workflow that predicts different subtypes of glioma from spontaneous Raman spectra of FFPE tissue slides. Our novel APOLLO platform distinguishes tumors from nontumor tissue and identifies novel Raman peaks corresponding to DNA and proteins that are more intense in the tumor. APOLLO differentiates isocitrate dehydrogenase 1 mutant (IDH1mut) from wildtype (IDH1WT) tumors and identifies cholesterol ester levels to be highly abundant in IDHmut glioma. Moreover, APOLLO achieves high discriminative power between finer, clinically relevant glioma methylation subtypes, distinguishing between the CpG island hypermethylated phenotype (G-CIMP)-high and G-CIMP-low molecular phenotypes within the IDH1mut types.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our results demonstrate the potential of label-free Raman spectroscopy to classify glioma subtypes from FFPE slides and to extract meaningful biological information thus opening the door for future applications on these archived tissues in other cancers.
    Keywords:  FFPE tissue; Raman spectroscopy; glioma; lipid metabolism; machine learning
  8. Commun Biol. 2024 Jun 03. 7(1): 677
      We present a quantitative sandwich immunoassay for CD63 Extracellular Vesicles (EVs) and a constituent surface cargo, EGFR and its activity state, that provides a sensitive, selective, fluorophore-free and rapid alternative to current EV-based diagnostic methods. Our sensing design utilizes a charge-gating strategy, with a hydrophilic anion exchange membrane functionalized with capture antibodies and a charged silica nanoparticle reporter functionalized with detection antibodies. With sensitivity and robustness enhancement by the ion-depletion action of the membrane, this hydrophilic design with charged reporters minimizes interference from dispersed proteins, thus enabling direct plasma analysis without the need for EV isolation or sensor blocking. With a LOD of 30 EVs/μL and a high relative sensitivity of 0.01% for targeted proteomic subfractions, our assay enables accurate quantification of the EV marker, CD63, with colocalized EGFR by an operator/sample insensitive universal normalized calibration. We analysed untreated clinical samples of Glioblastoma to demonstrate this new platform. Notably, we target both total and "active" EGFR on EVs; with a monoclonal antibody mAb806 that recognizes a normally hidden epitope on overexpressed or mutant variant III EGFR. Analysis of samples yielded an area-under-the-curve (AUC) value of 0.99 and a low p-value of 0.000033, surpassing the performance of existing assays and markers.