2007

Khalid Shah PhD, MSc

Massachusetts General Hospital East Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA Director, Molecular Neurotherapy and Imaging Lab, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School; Director, Stem Cell Therapeutics and Imaging, Center for Translational Research, MGH; Principal Faculty, Harvard Stem Cell Institute; Associate Professor of Radiology, HMS

Research Focus: Brain Tumor Targeting

Cancer Type: Brain Cancer

Award: Young Investigator/ Swim Across America Award

Recipient of the Swim Across America Young Investigator Award
Malignant glioblastomas have virtually defied all therapeutic modalities to date. Successful therapies will need novel strategies targeting the underlying pathogenesis which may ultimately offer an innovative approach for glioblastoma patients. We have previously shown that neural stem cells engineered with tumor-selective secretable tumor necrosis factor apoptosis inducing ligand (S-TRAIL) specifically home to the tumors in the brain and have anti-tumor effects. The proposed study aims at using neural stem cells to deliver therapeutic drugs that can stop tumor cells to proliferate and simultaneously kill them while leaving the normal brain cells intact. This will be combined with novel in vivo imaging methods that will allow us to monitor the location and size of tumors and track the migration of neural stem cell delivery vehicles in experimental animal models.

These studies will allow us to develop a clinically relevant therapeutic modality in which the main tumor mass in the brains of patients will be removed at the time of surgery and therapeutic neural stem cells will be introduced near the remaining tumor cells thus eliminating the risk of recurrence. This will have a major impact in developing more efficient means of eradicating gliomas and saving the lives of many brain cancer patients.

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