Study Vaccine Helps Extend Lives Of Patients With Brain Tumors

10.05.10 | FL News Team

(Washington, DC)  --  The lives of patients suffering from the most deadly type of brain tumor, glioblastoma could be dramatically extended by a new experimental vaccine.  The vaccine has been found to target an aggressive cancer gene that fuels the brain tumor.

The small study -- published in the "Journal of Clinical Oncology" -- found patients who received the vaccine had a longer "progression free survival period" of 14.2 months compared to 6.3 months for those not taking the vaccine.

Researchers say the survival rate was extended from 15 months to 26 months for patients in the study taking the experimental drug.  The vaccine also helped trigger an immune response in half of the patients using the drug.  

Glioblastoma is the most common form of brain cancer.  Around ten-thousand new cases are diagnosed each year in the U.S.  On average patients live just over 12 months after finding out they have the disease.