Neurosurgical Oncology

Image of tumor

The Case Western Reserve University Department of Neurological Surgery is among the leaders in the number of brain tumor treatments it offers as well its involvement in some of the world's most innovative clinical trials. We offer a wide breadth of therapeutic offerings so that we can tailor the best and most advanced therapies that each unique tumor demands.

Our neuro-oncology program is highlighted by its broad spectrum of advanced treatment modalities, research, and access to breakthrough neuro-oncology clinical trials. Students benefit from the Department's affiliation with University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, its Neurological Institute and University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, one of only 12 freestanding cancer hospitals that are part of a National Cancer Center Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center.

We routinely utilize methods that allow us to maximize the safety and extent of surgical resection for patients with brain tumors. When appropriate, cortical stimulation is used to map the motor strip and speech centers. Our intraoperative MRI suite allows us to judge the extent of resection during surgery. We also are just one of three sites in the world currently offering AutoLITT (laser interstitial thermal therapy) for the treatment of glioblastomas and other "inoperable" brain cancers.

The Department of Neurological Surgery has been involved in many investigational clinical trials for malignant gliomas over the past several years. Our current malignant glioma trials include an IGF gene therapy protocol for newly diagnosed tumors. We also participate in multi-center trials that combine radiation, radiosurgery and chemotherapy. For newly diagnosed brain metastases, we are conducting a study of Gamma Knife radiosurgery alone (instead of following whole brain radiation) for patients who are elderly or have poor functional status.

Dr. Andrew Sloan M.D. is the Director of Neurosurgical Oncology at University Hospitals and is involved in over 20 active clinical trials at University Hospitals in conjunction with the Seidman Cancer Center and the Department of Neurological Surgery.

A multi-disciplinary team comprised of neurologists, neurosurgeons and radiologists drive the Department of Neurological Surgery's Center for Image-Guided Neurosurgery.

Research includes technology development in interactive imaging and guidance. Current studies include integration techniques for surgical navigation, non-rigid body approaches to tissue deformation, augmented reality displays, robotics instrumentation, intraoperative integration of real-time imaging and electrophysiology data, and clinical outcomes analyses. The intra-operative magnetic resonance (MR) operating room (OR) provides an environment for many of these studies. A multidisciplinary effort is underway to develop artificial intelligence-based automated analysis of intraoperative electrophysiology microelectrode recording during functional neurosurgical procedures.

The Neurological Surgery Imaging Laboratory provides imaging support for clinical care as well as performing ongoing research in neurosurgical imaging and the interface between imaging and surgery. The research lab provides assistance for open stereotactic procedures as well as for radiosurgical procedures. Research focuses on computer-assisted surgery, including the development of software that can provide intraoperative updating of 3-D images for use during surgery. The lab is also involved with the development of custom fitting tissue-engineered cranial implants for use in neurosurgical procedures. The Imaging Laboratory supports the Gamma Knife radiosurgery unit and has played a significant role in development imaging and operative tools and procedures for use in the intraoperative MR OR. Finally, the Imaging Laboratory conducts preclinical research in, and supports the Department's clinical trials on, the photodynamic therapy of glioma (brain tumor).

  • The Ben & Catherine Ivy Foundation (BCIF) Grant Research Collaboration Contact
  • The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA)
  • Chemokine Secreting Dendritic Cells for Glioma Immunotherapy
  • A Phase II/III Randomized Study of CDX-110 with Radiation and Temozolomide in Patients
  • Open-label, Dose Confirmation and Dosimetry Study of Interstitial 131 I-chTNT-1/BmAb (Cotara ®) for the Treatment of Recurrent GBM
  • A Prospective Multi-center Trial of NovoTTF-100A Compared to Best Standard of Care in Patients with Progressive or Recurrent GBM
  • A Prospective First-in-Man (FIM) Safety Trial of the AutoLlTT Laser Treatment of Recurrent/Progressive Brain Tumors and Involving the AutoLlTT Laser Treatment System
  • Phase II Study of HSPPC-96 Vaccine in Patients with Recurrent High-grade Glioma
  • Protocol 020221 - A Phase II Clinical Trial Evaluating DCVax ® - Brain, Autologous Dendritic Cells Pulsed with Tumor Lysate Antigen for the Treatment of Glioblastoma Multiforme
  • AZD2171 in Adult Patients with Neurofibromatosis Type 1
  • A Phase III Randomized Study of Neuradiab in Combination with External Beam Radiation and Temozolomide Versus External Beam Radiation and Temozolomide in Patients with Newly Diagnosed GBM
  • An Evaluation of Photodynamic Therapy
  • Strength and Resorption of Biodegradable Skull Implant