What is CNS Lymphoma and How is it Treated?

Medically reviewed by David Reardon, MD Central nervous system (CNS) lymphoma is an extremely rare form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma that involves the brain and spinal cord, the primary components of your body’s central nervous system. Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is a type of cancer that originates in lymphocytes, infection-fighting white blood cells that make up your immune … Read more

What’s New in Immunotherapy for Brain Tumors?

Vaccines, drugs, and modified human cells that activate the immune system against cancer have improved outcomes and prolonged lives in some types of cancer in the past few years. For patients with glioblastoma, the most common primary brain tumor in adults, immunotherapy has shown some promise in clinical trials — but it can’t yet be … Read more

Webchat: The Latest in Brain Tumor Research and Care

In honor of Brain Tumor Awareness Month, David Reardon, MD, and Patrick Wen, MD, of Dana-Farber’s Center for Neuro-Oncology, went live on Facebook to answer questions about brain cancer. The doctors discussed advice for brain tumor patients, answered audience questions, and described the difference between the two major categories of brain cancers—primary cancer, developed in … Read more

What Are the Most Common Brain Tumors?

The brain controls many vital bodily functions – and when a tumor grows into or presses on an area of the brain, it may stop that part of the brain from functioning normally. Nearly 80,000 new cases of primary brain tumors are expected to be diagnosed this year, according to the American Brain Tumor Association. … Read more

Cancer Conversations Podcast—Episode #17: The Latest in Brain Tumor Research and Treatment

Brain tumors can be among the most challenging cancers to treat. The blood-brain barrier, a natural defense mechanism that shields the brain from harm, can also prevent cancer treatments from reaching tumors. “It can be difficult to get treatments effectively into the brain,” says David Reardon, MD, clinical director of Dana-Farber’s Center for Neuro-Oncology. However, … Read more

What Is the Blood-Brain Barrier and How Does it Affect Brain Tumor Treatment?

The blood-brain barrier surrounds the brain and prevents harmful toxins and bacteria in the blood stream from entering the vital organ. What evolved as a life-saving defense, however, also blocks many drugs from reaching the brain, creating a major problem in treating brain tumors. The blood-brain barrier is formed by tightly-packed cells lining the walls … Read more

The Latest Research and Treatment for Adult Brain Tumors

Historically, brain tumors have been some of the most challenging types of cancers. A protective barrier around the brain—called the “blood-brain barrier”—can prevent cancer treatments from reaching the tumor. Recently, increased interest in immunotherapy has given new hope to getting through this barrier. “We know the immune system can get into the brain to fight … Read more