1,500 Australians are diagnosed with brain cancer each year.
Gliomas are the most common primary brain tumour in adults and children. For patients with the commonest form, glioblastoma multiforme, the median survival is approximately one year.
Gliomas have been found to be associated with human cytomegalovirus (HCMV), a common virus that usually causes flu-like symptoms upon infection, and remains dormant in the body.
- developing a vaccine for HCMV for the treatment and prevention of glioblastoma and other conditions resulting from HCMV infection
- manipulating a DNA repair (ATM) gene with the view to making tumours more susceptible to radiation therapies
- developing treatments that target proteins specific to cancer, leaving normal cells alone
- creating a library of brain cancer cells to use for testing of potential treatments
- investigating how glioblastoma-associated genes influence the tumour and whether targeting these may provide new opportunities for treating the disease.
- a treatment recently developed for leukaemia could also have application for targeting brain cancer