Malignant brain tumors account for a significant portion of solid tumors with high mortality and morbidity.
Approximately 200,000 brain tumors are diagnosed in North America each year, of which 50,000 originate in the brain and 150,000 metastasize from extracranial tumors. Brain tumors are the leading cause of cancer-related death in children. Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common primary brain tumor, and claims over 12,000 lives annually in the United States. Despite advances in surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, the prognosis remains poor with a median survival below two years for GBM patients. Therefore, the need for better treatments and management strategies is acute.
The purpose of the Pacific Neuroscience Research Center Program is to integrate basic science, preclinical, and clinical research to improve the understanding of brain tumor biology. By using clinical samples and a wide variety of molecular, cellular, and genetic methods our goals are to:
- Study the behavior and therapeutic potential of both normal and brain tumor cancer stem cells
- Find new biomarkers for cancer detection
- Develop new drug strategies for personalized treatments
By combining laboratory and clinical data, our goal is to open new avenues toward therapies tailored to individual patients.