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Curr Opin Neurol. 2005 Dec;18(6):639-44.

An update on oligodendroglial neoplasms.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.



The most widely accepted brain tumor classification system remains morphology-based but the increasing knowledge of the molecular pathogenesis of oligodendroglial tumors has spurred translational research yielding new diagnostic and therapeutic paradigms. These data have accumulated rapidly and, in combination with exciting new insights in the cellular origin of these tumors, necessitate a review.


'Cancer stem cells' have been identified in gliomas. Further study of these cells will not only provide information on the cellular origin and pathogenesis of these tumors but may also give rise to new treatments that target a cell pool not amenable to current therapeutic strategies. Molecular tumor characteristics have been correlated with imaging findings, treatment response and prognosis. This has enabled neuro-oncologists to take a risk-stratified approach to patients with oligodendrogliomas that optimizes treatment efficacy and minimizes toxicity. Furthermore, more accurate epidemiological data have become available from population-based studies.


In spite of remarkable progress over the last 15 years, these tumors remain incurable. The search for a cure has to go on, while currently available multidisciplinary treatments are refined.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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