AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 2, 2017

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Cedars-Sinai Neuroscientists Pinpoint Key Gene Controlling Tumor Growth in Brain Cancers

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Discovery could result in more accurate prognoses and help fuel development of new treatments

Cedars-Sinai investigators have identified a stem cell-regulating gene that affects tumor growth in patients with brain cancer and can strongly influence survival rates of patients. The findings could move physicians closer to their goal of better predicting the prognosis of patients with brain tumors and developing more personalized treatments for them. To enhance understanding of how glioma cancer stem cells (GCSCs) reproduce and how they affect patient survival, investigators spent three years analyzing the genetic makeup of more than 4,000 brain tumors. During their investigation, they identified the gene, called ZEB1, that regulates tumor growth. The investigators’ analysis suggests that brain cancer patients who don’t have the gene tend to have lower survival rates.

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