Novel therapeutic delivery approaches in development for pediatric gliomas

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SUMMARY Pediatric gliomas are a heterogeneous group of diseases, ranging from relatively benign pilocytic astrocytomas with >90% 5-year survival, to glioblastomas and diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas with <20% 5-year survival. Chemotherapy plays an important role in the management of these tumors, particularly in low-grade gliomas, but many high-grade tumors are resistant to chemotherapy. A major obstacle and contributor to this resistance is the blood–brain barrier, which protects the CNS by limiting entry of potential toxins, including chemotherapeutic agents. Several novel delivery approaches that circumvent the blood–brain barrier have been developed, including some currently in clinical trials. This review describes several of these novel approaches to improve delivery of chemotherapeutic agents to their site of action at the tumor, in attempts to improve their efficacy and the prognosis of children with this disease.

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