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The Gothenburg population-based glioblastoma research database: Methodological aspects and potential impact

Journal article
Authors Boglarka Fekete
Katja Werlenius
Helena Carén
Anneli Ozanne
Lars Rosengren
Henrik Zetterberg
Magnus Tisell
Anja Smits
Fredrik Pontén
Cecilia Lindskog
Thomas Olsson Bontell
Asgeir Store Jakola
Bertil Rydenhag
Published in Neurology and Neurosurgery
Volume 2
ISSN 2631-4339
Publication year 2019
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology
Institute of Clinical Sciences, Department of Oncology
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Physiology
Sahlgrenska Cancer Center
Department of Laboratory Medicine
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Clinical Neuroscience
Institute of Health and Care Sciences
Language en
Keywords glioblastoma, quality of life, population-based cohort, tissue sampling, study protocol, tissue bank, biomarkers, survival, clinical outcome, prognosis, response to therapy
Subject categories Health Sciences, Basic Medicine


Background: Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is the most frequently encountered malignant primary brain tumour. Population-based studies of GBM are still scarce. The current paper describes the design of a prospective population-based multidisciplinary research effort on GBM. Objective: To address the impact of a wide range of clinical parameters in relation to clinical outcome and survival in a population-based cohort of patients with GBM. Further, we aim to examine the role of established and novel biomarkers in tumour tissue and blood in relation to response to treatment and clinical outcome. Methods: This is a single institution, population-based study with consecutive inclusion of patients based on a presumed diagnosis of GBM following radiological diagnostic work-up and discussion at a multidisciplinary tumour conference. Clinical parameters and treatment-related parameters at disease onset and during follow-up, and survival will be recorded. Health-related quality of life and emotional wellbeing for patients and their relatives will be assessed. Fresh-frozen and formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tumour tissue is stored in an associated tissue biobank. Tissue micro-arrays are generated from representative areas of FFPE. Blood samples at admission for surgery and during follow-up are taken and stored frozen. Expected outcome: The study offers a multidisciplinary and translational approach to GBM research by linking a wide range of clinical parameters to biological parameters with high external validity. Thus, we expect to describe patterns of care and clinical course in a well-defined population-based cohort. Through a biomarker approach, we expect to 1) identify new biological subgroups of GBM, 2) explore and validate established and novel biomarkers for response to therapy, 3) estimate the proportion of patients suitable for targeted (“druggable”) therapy, and 4) explore and validate established and novel biomarkers for survival.

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