Treatment of recurrent diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma: The MD Anderson Cancer Center experience

Johannes E. Wolff, Michael E. Rytting, Tribhawan S. Vats, Peter E. Zage, Joann L. Ater, Shiao Woo, John Kuttesch, Leena Ketonen, Anita Mahajan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Recurrent diffuse intrinsic pontine gliomas (DIPG) are traditionally treated with palliative care since no effective treatments have been described for these tumors. Recently, clinical studies have been emerging, and individualized treatment is attempted more frequently. However, an informative way to compare the treatment outcomes has not been established, and historical control data are missing for recurrent disease. We conducted a retrospective chart review of patients with recurrent DIPG treated between 1998 and 2010. Response progression-free survival and possible influencing factors were evaluated. Thirty-one patients were identified who were treated in 61 treatment attempts using 26 treatment elements in 31 different regimens. The most frequently used drugs were etoposide (14), bevacizumab (13), irinotecan (13), nimotuzumab (13), and valproic acid (13). Seven patients had repeat radiation therapy to the primary tumor. Response was recorded after 58 treatment attempts and was comprised of 0 treatment attempts with complete responses, 7 with partial responses, 20 with stable diseases, and 31 with progressive diseases The median progression-free survival after treatment start was 0.16 years (2 months) and was found to be correlated to the prior time to progression but not to the number of previous treatment attempts. Repeat radiation resulted in the highest response rates (4/7), and the longest progression-free survival. These data provide a basis to plan future clinical trials for recurrent DIPG. Repeat radiation therapy should be tested in a prospective clinical study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-397
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neuro-Oncology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 2012


  • Biomathematics
  • Chemotherapy
  • Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma
  • Radiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology
  • Neurology


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