Research News

Brain tumour research is advancing around the world and this page highlights other recent breakthroughs.

Please note that these articles are provided for information only and any questions should be directed to your doctor.

Research News

December 2020 – Brain cancer linked to tissue healing: U of T researchers
“The healing process that follows a brain injury – from trauma to infection and stroke – could spur tumour growth.”

December 2020 –
Anti-diarrhea drug may treat same type of brain cancer that killed Gord Downie: study
“A research group in at Goethe University Frankfurt found that the drug loperamide, sometimes sold under the brand name Imodium, can be used to induce cell death in glioblastoma cell lines.”

December 2020 –
Researchers identify the origin of a deadly brain cancer News
A research team from McGill University have discovered a gene needed for tumour growth for a subgroup of glioblastoma that affects teens and young adults – providing an important first step towards more effective treatment.

December 2020 –
Why Tumor Necrosis Might Not Be Good News for Some Patients With Glioblastoma
Researchers at Penn State College of Medicine have said that higher amounts of tissue death brought on by certain white blood cells have been associated with poor survival in patients with aggressive glioblastomas.

December 2020 –
Kazia Therapeutics’ (ASX:KZA) brain cancer drug selected for international study
Kazia Therapeutics’ (KZA) paxalisib drug has been chosen for a multiple-therapy clinical trial in diffuse midline glioma.”

December 2020 –
New guidelines for treating the complications of brain tumours
An international team of researchers has now compiled international guidelines and standards for the treatment of common brain tumour complications.

November 2020 –
Is proton therapy the silver bullet for children with brain cancer?
A new study from the University of South Australia explores the efficacy of proton therapy in children with brain tumours.

November 2020 –
Novel nanoparticle therapy shows promise in glioblastoma
“The synthetic protein nanoparticle can cross the blood-brain barrier and deliver a targeted therapeutic to glioblastoma cells, say researchers.”

October 2020 – Next generation BRAF inhibitor cancer drug shows promise in early patient trial

A new drug designed to work on cancers with an altered BRAF gene has shown promise in an early patient trial.

October 2020 – University of Calgary researchers discover new tactic to stop the growth of a deadly brain cancer: Findings indicate the body may be the ultimate weapon against glioblastoma, but it needs help

Big news out of the University of Calgary as researchers look at reprogramming the immune system to stop the growth of glioblastoma.

October 2020 –

Midatech Pharma PLC Announces Headline Results of MTX110 Phase I DIPG Study

Midatech Pharma is pleased to announce encouraging headline results from a Phase I study at the University of California, San Francisco in patients with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (“DIPG”).

October 2020 – Precision and Hope – Sunnybrook’s new MR-Linac machine

“Carefully lowering the MR-Linac through the roof of Sunnybrook’s Odette Cancer Centre, and into a specially constructed radiation treatment bunker, was a feat almost as massive as the six-tonne machine itself.”

September 2020 – AstraZeneca says Tagrisso shown to slow lung cancer spreading to brain

Patients diagnosed early enough for certain lung tumours to be surgically removed, and who have a mutation of the so-called EGFR gene, found that Tagrisso cut the risk of developing brain metastases by 82%, a new study shows.

September 2020 – Brain tumour AI helping others

Artificial intelligence (AI) could play a role in diagnosing brain tumours, thanks to a branch of AI called Convolutional Neural Networks (CNN).

September 2020 –

Canadian immunotherapy holds promise for patients with brain cancer

Researchers find that CAR-T therapy can be effective reaching cells that spread from the primary tumour to other parts of the brain.

September 2020 –

Gene therapy provides a potential breakthrough in brain cancer treatment

A new technique of sensitizing stem cells to radiation therapy could have a significant effect on glioblastoma treatment.

September 2020 –

Medexus Reports Health Canada Approval of Gleolan® (5-ALA) for Use in Guided Surgical Resection of High-Grade Gliomas

Gleolan is a substance that makes glioma tumour tissue glow fluorescent under special blue light, and has the potential to greatly increase successful surgical resections.

August 2020 –

Gelareh Zadeh becomes first female chair of neurosurgery at University of Toronto

Congratulations to former Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada award recipient Dr. Gelarah Zadeh on her new appointment as chair of neurosurgery at University of Toronto – the first woman to ever hold the post.

August 2020 –

BioMark Team Secures Health Canada Letter of No Objection for Its Glioblastoma Clinical Trial

“BioMark Diagnostics Inc. is pleased to announce that Health Canada has approved its clinical trial application (CTA) and has granted a Letter of No Objection (NOL) for its application entitled ACETYL-AMANTADINE AS A BIOMARKER IN PATIENTS WITH GLIOBLASTOMA.”

August 2020 –

Gene targeting helps overcome the resistance of brain cancer to therapy

A McGill-led study reveals that suppressing the OSMR gene can improve the effectiveness of radiation therapy in glioblastoma patients.

August 2020 – New drug targets for lethal brain cancer discovered

Researchers engineered a new mouse model for studying glioblastoma, the most aggressive type of brain cancer.

July 2020 –

Five developments in oncology targets

An article exploring some of the newest oncologic drug targets, including those for glioblastoma, lung cancer and breast cancer.

July 2020 –

University and SickKids researchers use common diabetes drug to stimulate repair of brain cells

Researchers and clinicians from the University of Toronto and SickKids Hospital have found that a common diabetes drug may help repair brain injuries.

July 2020 –

UM researchers find new targets for deadly children’s brain tumour

“After discovering how a specific gene fuels a deadly form of children’s brain tumour, University of Manitoba researchers have successfully decreased this cancer in mice.”

July 2020 – Oncogene Responsible for Deadly Glioblastoma Identified

Scientists have identified an oncogene (a cancer-causing gene) responsible for glioblastoma, offering a promising new treatment target for a cancer that is always fatal.

July 2020 – U of T spin-off Empirica Therapeutics acquired by U.S. firm

Empirica Therapeutics, a startup co-founded by Donnelly Centre investigator Jason Moffat and Dr. Sheila Singh, has been acquired by U.S.-based Century Therapeutics.

July 2020 – Researchers discover new strategy to treat brain cancer patients

A new study out of Massachusetts shows that PAR glycohydrolase inhibitors can be used to enhance the effectiveness of chemotherapy in brain tumours.

July 2020 – Deconstructing glioblastoma complexity reveals its pattern of development

For the first time, researchers detected what they describe as a progenitor glioblastoma stem cell (GSC) — a cell type from which all other cancer cells develop – part of five main cancer cell types within each tumour.

July 2020 – Halifax neurosurgeons perform first robot-assisted brain biopsy in Canada

Halifax neurosurgeons are the first in Canada to use cutting-edge robotic technology to perform a brain biopsy.

June 2020 – Bruce Power launches Medical Isotope Advisory Panel

Brain Tumour Foundation of Canada is among a panel of experts and medical professionals dedicated to developing Bruce Power’s isotope program.

June 2020 – Diagnosing brain tumors with a blood test

A simple blood test has been found that accurately diagnosed and classified various brain tumours, opening the door to more accurate diagnoses and less-invasive treatments.

May 2020 – Neuro-oncology management during the COVID19 pandemic with a focus on WHO grades III and IV gliomas

In this consensus statement, an international group of experts present mitigation strategies and treatment guidance for patients suffering from high grade gliomas (HGGs) during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

May 2020Genetic Patterns in Brain Cancer Tumors Can Predict Life Expectancy

“For the past 70 years, the best indicator of life expectancy for a patient with glioblastoma (GBM) — the most common and the most aggressive brain cancer — has simply been age at diagnosis.”

May 2020

Health Canada grants market authorization to ROZLYTREK® (entrectinib) for ROS1-positive, locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer patients, not previously treated with crizotinib(1)

A new treatment for lung cancer that shows promise in brain metastases.

May 2020Developing microbeam radiation therapy (MRT) for inoperable cancer

High dose x-ray beams – narrower than a human hair – could be used to blast tumours while sparing the surrounding tissue in patients who have expended conventional radiation, thanks to researchers at the University of Saskatchewan.

May 2020Intel, Penn Medicine to co-develop AI tool for identifying brain tumours

Using new technology called ‘federated learning’, artificial intelligence will be able to gather data from participating researchers to help identify brain tumours without compromising the privacy of medical data.

May 2020Study predicts brain tumour response to therapy, could improve patient outcomes

A multi-institutional, international team led by researchers at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children’s Hospital has developed a novel approach that delivers appropriately-targeted chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapy directly into the cerebrospinal fluid that surrounds the tumor.

May 2020  A promising new treatment for recurrent paediatric brain cancer

A team of researchers have developed a novel methodology to predict, faster, whether or not a metastatic brain tumour would respond to radiotherapy.

May 2020Schizophrenia Drug Combined With Radiation Therapy Improves Overall Survival in Glioblastoma Mouse Model

A combination of radiation and the drug trifluoperazine not only targets glioblastoma cells but also helps overcome the resistance to treatment so common to this aggressive form of cancer. The results could prove promising for patients with the disease, for whom the median survival time is only 12 to 18 months following diagnosis.

April 2020 Nanoparticles offer large potential for brain cancer treatment

A team of researchers for Yale School of Medicine and Beijing Normal University have published a breakthrough study on the use of nanoparticles as a way to deliver drug therapy through the blood-brain barrier.

April 2020 Babies with brain tumors could benefit from targeted treatment

Brain cancer in infants is biologically distinct from other childhood brain tumours and could be successfully treated with targeted drugs, a new study has shown.

April 2020 Understanding brain tumors in children

A European study into the molecular properties of medulloblastoma could lead to more effective treatments in children with certain genetic predispositions.

April 2020 Germline Elongator mutations in Sonic Hedgehog medulloblastoma

By analysing all protein-coding genes, researchers identify and replicate rare germline loss-of-function variants across ELP1 in 14% of paediatric patients with the medulloblastoma subgroup Sonic Hedgehog.

March 2020 Development of new blood tests for GPs could help diagnose brain tumours earlier

The University of Bristol (UK) is leading a project to develop an easy and affordable blood test kit that would have the ability to detect brain tumours. The project explores the use of fluorescent nanomaterials to assist in early diagnostics.

February 2020 Multimillion-grant to speed innovative device for hard-to-treat brain disorders

New research could revolutionize the way doctors tackle hard-to-treat conditions such as brain cancer, ALS and Alzheimer’s, thanks to a landmark $16.7 million grant that will go toward a new type of focused ultrasound device.

February 2020 Computer Simulation Helps Study Brain Cancer Growth

The growth of brain cancers can be better understood with the help of a new computer platform developed by international scientists coordinated by Newcastle University.

February 2020 Cancer vaccine could boost the effectiveness of immunotherapy

Scientists at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, US, and the University of Leeds found that supercharging the mutation rate in cancer cells can create a powerful vaccine that is able to boost the effectiveness of immunotherapy.

February 2020 Bridging the gap between AI and the clinic

Researchers from The Neuro (Montreal Neurological Institute-Hospital) and the Montreal Children’s Hospital of the McGill University Health Centre have developed an open-source app that could bridge machine-learned algorithms with real world clinical practice.

February 2020 Childhood brain cancer: shedding light on tumor origin

A major discovery in the fight against childhood brain cancer has pointed to Peter Pan syndrome as a factor in the foetal development of deadly brain tumours. Peter Pan syndrome refers to the accidental stunting of cells that can then transform into malignant tumours.

February 2020 Robot Brings Companionship to Sick Kids

Meet Zenbo – a robot who visits sick kids and provides them with friendship, entertainment, and education. For young brain tumour patients with compromised immune systems, Zenbo provides companionship when having visitors is not an option. The robot was launched by Chai Lifeline Canada and programmed by a team at Ontario Tech University faculty of business and IT.

January 2020 Brain tumours manipulate neighbouring synapses

‘The growth of a brain tumour can be affected by the activity of its neighbouring neurons. The finding that such tumours send signals that boost connections between these neurons reveals a pathway that drives cancer growth.’

January 2020 Scientists Breach Brain Barrier To Tackle Tumours

Yale researchers have come up with a way to sneak past the brain’s immune system defense mechanisms, potentially opening the door to immunotherapy drugs targeted to glioblastomas. Until now, the immune system has been a formidable obstacle in the treatment of these deadly tumours.

January 2020 A New Treatment for Brain Cancer, Brain cancer: An intelligent molecule to fool and kill glioblastoma cells

Researchers at McGill University Health Centre have developed an intelligent molecule that is effective in fighting glioblastomas, with the potential to extend the lives of 1,500 Canadians each year.

January 2020 Brain Tumour Organoids May be Key to Time-sensitive Treatments for Glioblastomas
Growing organoids from tissue collected from a patient’s glioblastoma tumour could help doctors to better personalize treatments for brain tumour patients, and decrease the length of time between surgery and therapy.

December 2019 Medicenna Presents Additional Encouraging Phase 2b Clinical Data at the Inaugural Glioblastoma Drug Development Annual Summit
MDNA55 achieves up to 5 fold increase in 12 month survival rate in aggressive, chemotherapy resistant glioblastoma when compared to approved therapies

December 2019 Electrospun Fibers Used for Brain Tumor Treatment
University of Cincinnati professor Andrew Steckl, working with researchers from Johns Hopkins University, developed a new treatment for glioblastoma multiforme, or GBM, an aggressive form of brain cancer. Steckl’s Nanoelectronics Laboratory applied an industrial fabrication process called coaxial electrospinning to form drug-containing membranes.

December 2019 A potential new treatment for chemotherapy resistant glioblastoma
Recent findings have shown that the lack of improvements in glioblastoma management and prognosis can partially be attributed to the presence of chemotherapy-resistant glioblastoma-initiating cells (GICs).

November 2019 Proton radiotherapy better for pediatric brain cancer patients
Radiotherapy is essential for treating pediatric brain tumors, but the treatment comes with the risk of cognitive impairment. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine, Texas Children’s Hospital and the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) in Toronto examined children treated with two different kinds of radiotherapy—proton radiotherapy and photon radiotherapy—and found those treated with proton radiotherapy had less intellectual decline.

November 2019 Glioblastoma incidence rate trends in Canada and the United States compared with England, 1995–2015

November 2019 Kazia Therapeutics shares surge after positive early phase II study results for GDC-0084 in brain cancer patients
Majority of patients in the first stage of the study remain alive more than a year after diagnosis of glioblastoma, an aggressive form of primary brain cancer.

November 2019 Air pollution increases risk of brain cancer by 10 per cent, says new Canadian study
The study establishes a significant link between the newly-emerging threat of PM0.1 to an increase in brain cancer.

November 2019 Lithium can reverse radiation damage after brain tumor treatment
Children who have received radiotherapy for a brain tumour can develop cognitive problems later in life. In their studies on mice, researchers at Karolinska Institutet have now shown that the drug lithium can help to reverse the damage caused long after it has occurred.

November 2019 UBC expert immobilizes tiny structures linked to metastatic breast cancer
Although breast cancer treatment has made great strides, around 5,000 Canadian women are still expected to succumb to the disease in 2019 alone. And it’s not the breast tumour that will kill them; it’s the spread of the cancer cells to other sites—a process called metastasis.

November 2019 Small molecule combats cancer-causing KRAS protein at last
A molecule has now been characterized that acts to inhibit a cancer-causing form of KRAS protein and stimulate the immune system. The inhibitor is one of the first of its kind to show anticancer activity in the clinic.

November 2019 The future of immunotherapy for glioblastoma
Researchers test a new method of administering immunotherapy, in the hopes of overcoming existing barriers to immunotherapy for glioblastoma.

October 2019 Did you know that circulating tumour cells can target distant organs?
Most cancers kill because tumour cells spread beyond the primary site to invade other organs. Now, a USC study found that circulating tumour cells can target specific distant organs.

October 2019 Hydrogel that could end chemo for kids with brain cancer: Brigham BRIght Futures Competition 
An adhesive hydrogel that reveals and kills cancer cells could mean the end of debilitating radiation, chemotherapy and surgery for children with brain cancer, a lethal disease that impacts thousands of pediatric patients each year.

October 2019 Teaming up for brain tumour research
ACTNOW (Atlantic Canada Therapeutic Neural-Oncology Working Group) collaborates to advance patient care.

October 2019 Compound Kills Chemotherapy-resistant Cancer Cells
A compound effective in killing chemotherapy-resistant glioblastoma-initiating cells (GICs) has been identified, raising hopes of producing drugs capable of eradicating refractory tumors with low toxicity.

October 2019 ID1 inhibition may improve efficacy of glioblastoma treatment
Investigators from St. Michael’s Hospital and The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto have determined that the transcriptional regulatory protein ID1 appears to maintain cancer stem cells in glioblastoma.

October 2019 Potential for Fundamental Change in the Treatment of Brain Cancer 
Noxopharm announces that it will apply its glutamate-inhibition technology to the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).

October 2019 New blood test uses infrared light, AI to detect signs of brain cancer 
Researchers have developed a new blood test that could lead to improved brain cancer diagnoses, according to new findings published in Nature Communications.

October 2019 Alterations to the circadian clock make brain tumours vulnerable 
The body’s circadian clock ensures the rhythmic expression of some genes across the day. The catalogue of genes under circadian control changes in an aggressive brain cancer — a discovery that might open up a new avenue for treatment.

October 2019 New blood test could help hasten the diagnosis of brain tumors 
A blood test which could help to accelerate the diagnosis of brain cancer has been developed in research led at the University of Strathclyde.

October 2019 ICR Collaborates With AI Drug Discovery Company To Develop Treatments for Rare Childhood Cancer
Scientists at The Institute of Cancer Research, London, are working with Healx, a biotech company specialising in artificial intelligence (AI) to discover new possible ways of treating diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), an essentially untreatable brain cancer in children.

October 2019 Scientists Create Brain-Mimicking Environment to Grow 3D Tissue Models of Brain Tumors 
Use of brain-like extracellular matrix allows cell growth and treatment to more closely replicate physiological response

October 2019 Leukemia drug, Nilotinib, may be useful in treating certain pediatric cancers
Newly discovered activity of the leukemia drug, nilotinib, shows promise for being useful to treat certain types of cancer.

September 2019 Cancer cells have the startling ability to behave like neurons
Just like neurons, certain tumour cells possess synapses, according to three complementary studies published on 18 September in Nature (1–3). Synapses are structures that nerve cells use to communicate and it seems aggressive brain tumours may use these same connections to integrate and form networks throughout the brain – and to evade detection.

September 2019 Cancer tumours form surprising connections with healthy brain cells
Healthy neurons form synapses with aggressive brain cancer cells that stimulate the growth and proliferation of brain cancer; anti-epileptic medicine can curb the dangerous communication and possibly be part of future treatment, a Norwegian study shows.

September 2019 Medicenna Presents Promising Update from its MDNA55 Clinical Trial in Recurrent Glioblastoma at the Targeting Innate Immunity Congress
Patients treated at the high dose show impressive survival benefit. IL4R population surviving twice as long as current approved treatments

September 2019 U of A researchers move closer to ‘magic’ cancer treatment 
Small molecules could help immune system attack tumours.

September 2019 Mechanism behind glioblastoma survival revealed by study 
Researchers have discovered the process that enables glioblastomas to avoid the effects of the immune system, presenting an immuno-oncology target.

September 2019 Bayer’s Vitrakvi is first tumour-agnostic drug approved in EU 
Bayer’s TRK inhibitor Vitrakvi has been approved by the EMA, becoming the first therapy for cancer based on its molecular signature rather than its location in the body.

September 2019 Light-activated metal compound cuts off cancer cell’s ‘power source’ 
A space-age metal that formed part of the asteroid that destroyed the dinosaurs could provide a new method of treating cancer tumors selectively using light.

September 2019 Cancer Cells Have “Unsettling” Ability to Hijack the Brain’s Nerves 
Startling discovery could open up avenues for treating some aggressive tumors.

September 2019 Study reveals neuronal role in glioblastoma growth and how to prevent it 
Researchers have discovered neurons send electrical signals to glioblastoma tumours, causing them to grow but have also identified methods of prevention in models.

September 2019 Kazia Therapeutics confirms successful completion of phase I study of its childhood cancer drug 
Kazia Therapeutics Ltd has revealed that St Jude Children’s Research Hospital successfully completed the first stage of its ongoing phase I study of Kazia’s investigational new drug, GDC-0084 in diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) and other diffuse midline gliomas.

September 2019 Two Studies Show Promise, Safety of Proton Therapy in the Brain in Children with Cancer 
From improving outcomes in children with brain cancer to lowering the risk of damage to the brainstem in children with central nervous system tumors, a pair of new studies published today add to the growing body of research showing the potential benefits of proton therapy.

September 2019 Existing Drug “Blocks” Brain Tumor Growth 
A research team from the University of Georgia’s Regenerative Bioscience Center has found that a compound molecule used for drug delivery of insulin could be used to treat glioblastoma, an aggressive, usually fatal form of brain cancer.

September 2019 A diabetes drug promotes brain repair — but it only works in females
Accounting for sex differences in research animals is vital for the development of better treatments as drug shows promise in female mice alone.

September 2019 Novocure Announces 27 Presentations at the American Society for Radiation Oncology 2019 Annual Meeting 
The volume of Tumor Treating Fields presentations marks a record number of abstracts for Novocure at one of the premier meetings for radiation oncologists.

September 2019 Message in a brain cell: $7.4M award to decode cues that spur children’s brain tumors
Brain tumor researchers will use an advanced sequencing technology developed at the Stanford University School of Medicine to decode the messages or signals that help brain tumors grow, in the hope of finding new ways to treat the disease in children.

September 2019 Brain tumour detection firm picked for UK-wide AI scale-up programme 
A Glasgow firm which uses artificial intelligence to quickly detect brain tumours has been named on a UK-wide scale-up programme aimed at fast-tracking innovations in the sector.

September 2019 Bristol-Myers Squibb Provides Update on Phase 3 Opdivo (nivolumab) CheckMate -548 Trial in Patients with Newly Diagnosed MGMT-Methylated Glioblastoma Multiforme

August 2019 New mathematical model can improve radiation therapy of brain tumors 
Researchers have developed a new model to optimize radiation therapy and significantly increase the number of tumor cells killed during treatment. The new mathematical model can use information about where the majority of the cells in a tumor are located allowing for radiation treatment to be administered to the densest area.

August 2019 Removing cancer’s protective barrier could boost immunotherapy treatments
Scientists may have found a way to pull down the protective wall that surrounds tumours, potentially re-exposing them to the killing power of the immune system and immunotherapy treatments, according to a study part funded by Cancer Research UK and published in EBioMedicine today.

August 2019 First patient in Canada treated on MR-Linac – Elekta Unity
This technology is the first machine in the world to combine radiation and high-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and will let doctors at the Odette Cancer Centre target tumours and monitor their response to radiation with unprecedented precision — even as a tumour moves inside the body — thanks to the machine’s real-time MRI guidance.

August 2019 Simple blood test may help detect glioblastoma
A new discovery by researchers at the University of Sussex in the UK has shown promise for facilitating a simple test to diagnose glioblastoma, the most aggressive brain tumour.

August 2019 Identification of genes responsible for sex-related differences in cancer aggressiveness
Cancer does not affect men and women equally, but we know little about the molecular causes underlying this difference. Published in Science Advances, a study by the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona) involving the vinegar fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has identified possible regulators that determine differences in tumours between sexes.

August 2019 Ziopharm Oncology Announces Publication of Positive Results of Phase 1 Monotherapy Trial of Controlled IL-12 in Patients with Recurrent Glioblastoma in Science Translational Medicine

August 2019 Henry Ford Cancer Institute Enrolls First Patient in World’s Largest Brain Cancer Clinical Trial
Henry Ford Cancer Institute is first-in-the-world to enroll a patient in the GBM AGILE Trial (Adaptive Global Innovative Learning Environment) – a novel trial design and architecture made possible by an international collaboration of experts in the care of patients with glioblastoma and the design of clinical trials.

August 2019 Brain Cancer Patients Display Decreasing Tumor Biomarkers After Treatment with Novel Immunotherapy in AIVITA Biomedical’s Phase 2 Clinical Trial August 2019 Immune-Activating Gene Therapy for Gliobastoma
The results of an early trial in 31 brain cancer patients finds immune activity boosted in the tumor, and possibly longer survival.

August 2019 Six Western projects earn CFI backing
From hearing loss and brain activity, to cancer and joints, to sustainable energy and social cues, six Western-led projects, involving 10 researchers within four faculties, received more than $1 million through the Canada Foundation for Innovation’s (CFI) John R. Evans Leaders Fund, Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science and Sport announced Monday in Edmonton.

August 2019 New method to classify brain tumour in children 
Brazilian researchers have developed a low-cost method of classifying the most common malignant brain tumour in children, which they say can help medics diagnose and treat the condition.

August 2019 UWindsor researcher gets $100K to study ‘muscle wasting’ in cancer patients

August 2019 Adding MS Drug to Targeted Cancer Therapy may Improve Glioblastoma Outcomes Glioblastoma is an aggressive form of brain cancer that infiltrates surrounding brain tissue, making it extremely difficult to treat with surgery.

August 2019 VERZENIO™ (abemaciclib) Available in Canada for Metastatic Breast Cancer 

August 2019 Synaptive launches surgical planning tool for neurosurgeons
Synaptive Medical has launched surgical planning tool Modus Plan, featuring BrightMatter AutoSeg, for neurosurgeons in the US.

August 2019: Could research techniques designed for frogs help spawn a cure for brain tumours? 
Research techniques previously used to investigate the genetic makeup of frogs are being used at our Centre of Excellence at the University of Portsmouth to help improve our understanding of brain tumours.

August 2019: Google maps for tumours and organs 
German researchers have developed a software that allows to manage and correct the huge amount of data generated by 3D reconstruction of tumours or organs using light sheet microscopy.

August 2019: Brain Tumour Research’s liquid aspirin study is making headlines 
The study, led by Dr Richard Hill, has shown how a cheap drug combining three readily available medications could be effective in treating brain tumours.

August 2019: Novel nano-vaccine for melanoma developed 
Jerusalem: Researchers have developed an effective nano-vaccine for melanoma, the most aggressive type of skin cancer. The approach developed by researchers at Tel Aviv University in Israel has so far proven effective in preventing the development of melanoma in mouse models and in treating primary tumours and metastases that result from melanoma.

August 2019: How artificial intelligence could change the way brain surgeons are trained
Alexander Winkler-Schwartz focuses on the computer-generated brain on the screen while, below, his hands gently remove the virtual brain tumour inside the mannequin’s head.

August 2019: Machine Learning Identification of Surgical and Operative Factors Associated With Surgical Expertise in Virtual Reality Simulation 
Despite advances in the assessment of technical skills in surgery, a clear understanding of the composites of technical expertise is lacking. Surgical simulation allows for the quantitation of psychomotor skills, generating data sets that can be analyzed using machine learning algorithms.

August 2019: Artificial Intelligence and Training Physicians to Perform Technical Procedures 
Winkler-Schwartz et al have set out to determine if some combination of machine learning algorithms can differentiate participants according to their stage of practice (ie, neurosurgeon, fellow, senior or junior resident, or medical student) based on their performance of a complex simulated neurosurgical task.

August 2019: Bringing Augmented Reality to Brain Surgery
Can a piece of paper and a smartphone lead to improvements in brain surgery? That’s the hope of a team based at the Western University in London, ON.

July 2019: MIT “Russian Doll” tech lands $7.9M international award to fight brain tumors
Researchers from MIT will work with teams in the U.K. and Europe to use nanoparticles to carry multiple drug therapies to treat glioblastoma.

July 2019: HAMLET Pharma Announces Results of First Major Clinical Trial for a New Cancer Killing Molecule
A research group in Lund led by Professor Catharina Svanborg discovered in 1995 that a component of human breast milk kills tumor cells without harming mature, healthy cells. Further experiments and studies have shown that the effect is due to the most common protein in human milk, alpha-lactalbumin, but in a new shape, bound to oleic acid.

July 2019: Biomaterial-delivered chemotherapy leads to long-term survival in brain cancer
A combination of chemotherapy drugs during brain cancer surgery using a biodegradable paste, leads to long-term survival, researchers at the University of Nottingham have discovered.

July 2019: Heart drug could increase survival rates for children with aggressive form of brain tumor  
Researchers at the University of Nottingham have discovered that repurposing a heart drug could significantly increase the survival rate for children with ependymoma – a type of brain tumour.

July 2019: Study identifies new potential target in glioblastoma 
Researchers are hopeful that new strategies could emerge for slowing the growth and recurrence of the most common primary brain cancer in adults, glioblastoma, based on the results of a study published today in Cancer Research.

July 2019: Cancer cells will become vulnerable 
The Researchers from HSE University (The Higher School of Economics) have used machine learning to discover that the two most widespread DNA structures – stem-loops and quadruplexes – cause genome mutations that lead to cancer.

June 2019: Tumour treating fields in glioblastoma: Indication of a benefit 
Patients with a fatal brain tumour survive longer/New method is burdensome but does not seem to impair quality of life.

June 2019: Reporting from the American Society of Clinical Oncology
The ASCO conference took place earlier this month in Chicago, Illinois, and was attended by over 40,000 experts in oncology, making it the largest cancer conference in the world.

June 2019: Medicenna Presents Preliminary Top-Line Clinical Results from their Phase 2b Trial of MDNA55 in Recurrent Glioblastoma  
Disease control rate of up to 83% achieved; evidence of improved survival for patients.

June 2019: Brain cancer the target of precision medicine research
Fourteen University of Calgary scholars have been named Canada Research Chairs (CRCs), as part of a $275 million federal investment in research programs that will help our environment, health, communities and economy thrive.

June 2019: Breaking down the walls of scientific secrecy 
What happens when scientists throw open their notebooks, publishing failures and raw data in real time?

June 2019: Artificial nose identifies malignant tissue in brain tumours during surgery
An artificial nose developed at Tampere University, Finland, helps neurosurgeons to identify cancerous tissue during surgery and enables the more precise excision of tumours.

June 2019: Research sheds new light on how brain stem cells are activated  
Our brains are notoriously bad at regenerating cells that have been lost through injury or disease. While therapies using neural stem cells (NSCs) hold the promise of replacing lost cells, scientists need to better understand how NSCs behave in the brain in order to develop effective treatments.

June 2019: Proton therapy: Cancer revolution or costly white elephant?
It’s Asco week in Chicago: the biggest meeting of clinical oncologists in the world. McCormick Place convention centre, the largest in the US, is filled to its 2.6 million square foot capacity with people talking about cancer. And one of the hottest topics being discussed is something called proton therapy, a possible new tool in the anti-cancer arsenal.

June 2019: Pituitary adenomas
Pituitary adenomas are often clinically silent or manifest with non-specific symptoms, which can lead to a delayed diagnosis. This article provides a summary of clinical features and investigations to help non-specialists and primary care doctors to recognise and diagnose pituitary adenoma.

June 2019: Medicenna Presents Clinical Validation of the IL4 Receptor as a Biomarker for MDNA55 in Recurrent Glioblastoma  75% of IL4R+ve Patients Achieve Disease Control Following One Treatment With MDNA55
Medicenna Therapeutics Corp., a clinical stage immunotherapy company developing first-in-class Superkines and Empowered Cytokines, presented a poster entitled “MDNA55: A Locally Administered IL4 Guided Toxin as a Targeted Treatment for Recurrent Glioblastoma” at the 55th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) being held in Chicago, IL.

May 2019: A new home for Sam Weiss brings new hope for brain cancer research 
It takes a tremendous motivating factor to uproot a long-established laboratory and voluntarily move it somewhere new. For Dr. Samuel Weiss, PhD, the idea of collaborating in close proximity with more than a dozen investigators — including longtime colleagues Dr. Greg Cairncross, MD, and Dr. John Kelly, MD, PhD  — was all the incentive he needed.

May 2019: National research team targets glioblastoma
Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most common primary brain tumour in adults and is characterized by its infiltrative and often fatal progression. The strikingly poor survival for patients with GBM of 14-16 months following diagnosis is due in part to limited early detection methods and an absence of effective treatment options.

May 2019: Spiders could hold key to ‘smart bandage’ medical treatments: UVic research 
Spiders may give many people the creeps, but researchers at the University of Victoria say they could lead to some life-changing medical breakthroughs.

May 2019: ‘I want to help my patients the best I can’
Here are some questions and answers from the conversation with Dr. Zadeh, who talked about the most recent advances in Glioblastoma research that she hopes will one day positively impact outcomes for patients and increase survival rates.

May 2019: Hard knocks for brain cancer, again
In the wake of two phase III glioblastoma failures this month, from Abbvie and Bristol-Myers Squibb, hopes dim for another big readout from Tocagen.

May 2019: AbbVie Provides Update on Depatuxizumab Mafodotin (Depatux-M), an Investigational Medicine for Newly Diagnosed Glioblastoma, an Aggressive Form of Brain Cancer 
AbbVie, a research-based global biopharmaceutical company, today announced the Phase 3 INTELLANCE-1 study of depatuxizumab mafodotin (Depatux-M, previously known as ABT-414) in patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma (GBM), whose tumors have EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) amplification, demonstrated no survival benefit for patients receiving Depatux-M at an interim analysis.

May 2019: Patients at The Neuro benefit from clinical trials
After the tumour is removed by a neurosurgeon, a special X-ray source is placed inside the skull. Radiation is conventionally given only weeks after surgery, but this gives the cancer cells a chance to regrow. Giving radiation during surgery improves the patient’s chances of remaining cancer free.

May 2019: Could New Drug Become First Ever Targeted Therapy for “Untreatable” Childhood Brain Cancer?
A new type of drug that targets a genetic weakness in an untreatable childhood brain cancer could become the first ever treatment designed to target the disease.

April 2019: New blood tests to detect brain cancer could be in hospitals within three years
A low-cost blood test for the early detection of brain cancer could be in UK hospitals with three years, according to researchers. ClinSpec Diagnostics hopes the technology can reduce delays in referral times for patients.

April 2019: Memory could be better protected in kids with brain tumors if treated with proton therapy
Milan, Italy: A comparison of three types of radiotherapy for children’s brain tumours suggests that a type of proton therapy called pencil beam scanning offers the best hope of preserving cognitive functions.

April 2019: Viruses that kill bacteria could tackle ‘incurable’ brain cancers 
Viruses that kill bacteria could tackle ‘incurable’ brain cancers, according to early-stage research. The first trials could begin within the next three to five years in the US or UK.

April 2019: Precision medicine for pediatric cancers: New hope for children and adolescents
Five years after it was created to serve children and adolescents in Quebec, the TRICEPS team at CHU Sainte-Justice has demonstrated the feasibility of setting up a research program in pediatric oncology precision medicine, as described in a recent article published in the JAMA Network Open journal.

April 2019: U of T researchers ‘reverse engineer’ brain cancer cells to find new targets for treatment
Researchers at the University of Toronto, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the University of Calgary have ‘reverse engineered’ glioblastoma stem cells to uncover potential targets to treat the devastating form of brain cancer.

April 2019: Finding Drivers of Pediatric Brain Cancer Presents Therapeutic Possibilities
Cell-by-cell genetic analyses of developing brain tissues in neonatal mice and laboratory models of brain cancer allowed scientists to discover a molecular driver of the highly aggressive, deadly, and treatment-resistant brain cancer, glioblastoma.

April 2019: New clinical trial will determine if gliomas respond to immunotherapy
A class of immunotherapy drugs called immune checkpoint inhibitors is increasingly being used to treat a wide range of cancers, but they seem to be more effective in some patients more than others. Will one of these inhibitors work better for patients with high levels of mutations in their brain gliomas than for those with low levels?

April 2019: Magnetic nanoparticles can ‘burn’ cancer cells 
Magnetic hyperthermia is still a highly experimental cancer treatment, but new research shows that the therapy is tunable.

April 2019: Ziopharm Oncology shares pop after FDA awards fast-track status to brain cancer treatment
Data suggests Ad-RTS-hIL-12 with 20mg veledimex improves the median overall survival of a patient with a brain tumor.

March 2019: Bruce Power completes harvest of Cobalt-60 that will save lives through cancer treatments
Bruce Power has completed a harvest of medical-grade Cobalt-60, which will diagnose and treat brain and breast cancers.

March 2019: Understanding how people respond to symptoms of a brain tumour
A recent study from King’s College London and Cambridge University highlighted that people may experience multiple subtle changes before being diagnosed with a brain tumour.

March 2019: Study reveals the evolution of brain tumours
Only three different genetic alterations drive the early development of malignant glioblastomas, new research shows.

March 2019: Medexus Enters into Expanded Licensing Agreement for Gliolan® in Canada
Medexus Pharmaceuticals Inc. today announced that it has entered into a licensing agreement with photonamic GmbH & Co. KG for the exclusive rights to market and distribute Gliolan® in Canada, which assists neurosurgeons to better visualize and more completely remove malignant brain tumors (gliomas) by causing them to become fluorescent and glow during surgery.

February 2019: Brain Cancer: Vibrating the brain to find resistant tumours
The current treatment for brain cancer has almost no effect for some people with the disease. Norwegian researchers are now experimenting by using vibrations to find these patients.

January 2019: Bruce Power to expand its role in health care
Bruce Power plans broaden its role in health care with the increased production of medical isotopes in 2019.

January 2019: U of L researchers studying cells in glioblastoma
Brain cancer is one of today’s most aggressive, incurable diseases. But now the findings of a University of Lethbridge cancer research team, being shared worldwide, may lead to better outcomes.

January 2019: First-of-its-kind MRI technology coming to Halifax’s QEII
A Canadian-based medical technology company’s cutting-edge design will soon be implemented in a Nova Scotia Emergency Room, providing patients with better access to MRI’s and giving researchers the chance to study a new way to deliver neurological medical care.