Cerebral Organoids: Personalizing Glioblastoma Treatment
Groundbreaking Translational Research
Neuro-oncologist and translational scientist Howard Allan Fine, MD, has developed a completely novel way to personalize glioblastoma treatment by using advanced stem cell techniques to create individual patient mini-brains, or cerebral organoids. Each cerebral organoid is as developed and complex as a 20-week-old human fetus and includes its own brain tumor growing in the laboratory.
With funding from the STAR foundation and Dr. Fine’s NIH Director’s Pioneer award, the Weill Cornell Medicine Fine Lab at the Sandra and Edward Meyer Cancer Center at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell now hosts an $8 million hydraulic robotic automatic drug screening facility for the cerebral organoids. Neuro-oncologists are able to test experimental compounds or approved drugs in the cerebral organoids at the new screening facility.
The screening core allows doctors to evaluate which drugs are most effective for each patient’s particular tumor and then implement findings in the clinic. Additionally, all patients have access to full genomic sequencing and molecular and genetic analyses in order create a more precise treatment plan.