Glioma (cancer of the glial cells) is the most common type of malignant primary brain tumour (a tumour that originates in the brain), accounting for approximately one third of all cases diagnosed1. Glioblastoma (or glioblastoma multiforme) is the most common and the most aggressive type of glioma1. Globally, the incidence of glioblastoma is approximately 1 to 2 in 100,000 people annually1,2. Current treatment options for GBM are very limited. Generally, patients’ tumours get worse within the first 6 months of initial therapy and the median overall survival of patients following diagnosis is 15 months3. Glioblastoma has among the highest levels of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) expression of any solid tumour, which led to the rationale to investigate the effect of anti-angiogenic therapies on this disease.
1. Central Brain Tumor Registry of the United States (CBTRUS) 2012. CBTRUS Statistical Report: Primary Brain and Central Nervous System Tumors Diagnosed in the United States in 2004–2008 (Revised March 23, 2012). Available from: http://www.cbtrus.org/2012-NPCR-SEER/CBTRUS_Report_2004-2008_3-23-2012.pdf. Last accessed 21 May 2013.
2. Ferlay J, Shin HR, Bray F, Forman D, Mathers C and Parkin DM. GLOBOCAN 2008 v2.0, Cancer Incidence and Mortality Worldwide: IARC CancerBase No. 10 [Internet]. Lyon, France: International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2010. Available from: http://globocan.iarc.fr. Last accessed 21 May 2013.
3. Stupp R, Mason W, van den Bent M et al. Radiotherapy plus Concomitant and Adjuvant Temozolomide for Glioblastoma. N Engl J Med 2005;352:987-96