Institut Curie and Inserm research scientists and physicians have just shown that precise knowledge of alterations in chromosome 1 can be used to improve the treatment of gliomas, the most frequent brain tumors in adults. Diagnosis and treatment of these tumors are difficult because of their heterogeneity and variable malignancy. Using DNA chips, the authors of this report were able to distinguish the tumors with the best prognosis, whose chromosome 1 has undergone a specific deletion. Screening for these deletions should be incorporated into standard diagnostic tests by the end of 2005.
When CGH chips light up… Each point represents a DNA probe of about 150 000 base pairs on which the sample DNA has hybridized. The green spots correspond to regions where a deletion has occurred, and the red spots to regions that have been amplified. © Ahmed Idbaih/Institut Curie
These results are published in the September 2005 issue of Annals of Neurology.
Gliomas are the most frequent brain tumors in adults, and account for over 50% of primary tumors. They are classified into three groups: astrocytomas – 70% of all these tumors – derive from astrocytes, cells close to the neurones; oligodendrogliomas derive from cells that produce the sheaths of nerve fibers; and oligoastrocytomas which are mixed tumors combining the characteristics of the first two types.
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