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Glioblastoma is two separate cancers.

The most common type of brain cancer in adults, glioblastoma, should be treated as two diseases and not as one. The key lies in a gene mutation, according to Victor Velculescu of the Ludwig Center for Cancer Genetics and Therapeutics in Baltimore, Maryland.

Glioblastoma patients whose cancers carry the mutation IHD1 are 20 years younger, on average, than those who do not carry the mutation. Cancers carrying the mutation are also less aggressive, with a median survival of 3.8 years compared with 1.1 years for those suffering cancers that do not carry the mutation.

According to researchers, current drugs do not target IHD1, so patients with this mutation may respond differently to the drugs that are now used. The researchers identified the genetic mutation after sequencing the DNA from 22 human glioblastoma samples.

New Scientist 2008; 13 September: 16.

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Title Annotation:single suture
Publication:CME: Your SA Journal of CPD
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 1, 2008
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