By The Tribune-Review
Thursday, April 24, 2008

Pittsburgh cancer researchers have received a $6.24 million grant for three projects to take brain cancer treatments from the lab to clinical trials, the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine said today.
The grant from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke will pay for five years of research testing therapies for a type of brain tumor called gliomas. The projects are led by Dr. Ian Pollack, chief of the Division of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Children’s Hospital.
“Our researchers have developed three unique and promising approaches to treating gliomas, which are the most common form of brain tumors,” Pollack, also director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute’s Brain Tumor Program, said in a news release.
“Over the next five years, our goal is to take these approaches from the laboratory to clinical trial and begin to have a direct impact on patients diagnosed with brain tumors.”

The three projects involve molecularly targeted therapies to interrupt tumor growth, vaccinations against tumor growth and using viruses to kill tumor cells.
About 19,000 people are diagnosed with primary brain tumors annually and malignant gliomas are the most common, according to the National Cancer Institute.
For more information about Pitt’s Cancer Institute, visit online. For more information about Pollack’s research, visit online.