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Maximizing Local Access to Therapeutic Deliveries in Glioblastoma. Part I: Targeted Cytotoxic Therapy.


In: De Vleeschouwer S1, editor.


Glioblastoma [Internet]. Brisbane (AU): Codon Publications; 2017 Sep. Chapter 17.

Author information

Department of Neurosurgery, University Hospitals Leuven, Leuven, Belgium
Brain Tumor Center of Excellence, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Comprehensive Cancer Center, Winston Salem, NC, USA
Department of Experimental Therapeutics, Division of Cancer Medicine, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA
Deparment of Neurosurgery, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, Winston Salem, NC, USA


Glioblastoma (GBM), a primary brain tumor, remains an unmet medical need. One of the major obstacles to GBM treatment is the adequate properties of drugs. Complex pathobiology of GBM, including local invasion and intratumoral heterogeneity, represent major challenges to generating effective therapies. We discuss here the design of targeted cytotoxic drugs with an increased access to tumors and pathophysiologically important tumor compartments. Our research and others’ have shown that interleukin 13 receptor alpha 2 (IL-13RA2), EphA2, and EphA3 receptors are overexpressed in most patients with GBM, but not in normal brain, and also in spontaneous canine high-grade gliomas like GBM, an excellent translational model of GBM. These receptors and also the EphB2 receptor are overexpressed and are functional in several GBM compartments involved in tumor progression and/or resistance to therapies. We pursue the novel idea of targeting all four receptors with one targeted cytotoxic compound (QUAD-CTX). We are constructing a molecularly targeted anti-GBM drug that (i) may not require patient prescreening, (ii) will attack most tumor compartments known to be pathobiologically important, and (iii) performs these functions in one pharmaceutical entity, so it will be suitable for monotherapy. We thus wish to take advantage of a unique opportunity to produce an off-the-shelf, highly specific, molecularly targeted drug candidate suitable to treat perhaps even all patients with GBM. We envision that this “molecular resection” will translate into clear-cut durable responses in patients suffering from this dreadful disease.

Copyright: The Authors.

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