Funded Project 03

03 | Funded Period

Therapeutically addressing TAMEP mediated blood tumor barrier formation

Funding Period: 01.01.2024 – 31.12.2025
Project Lead: Prof. Dr. Rainer Glaß
University Hospital for Neurosurgery Munich

Project Description

Complete surgical resection of glioblastoma (GBM) is complicated by the infiltrative growth of this entity. Individual glioblastoma cells remain after a neurosurgical procedure and form the source of recurrences (reappearance of a tumor).

Adjuvant therapies (radiation and chemotherapy with temozolomide (TMZ)) are administered to control recurrence. However, there are probably areas in the residual tumor tissue that do not achieve a therapeutically sufficient influx of TMZ. The so-called blood tumor barrier (BTB) impairs the passage of the TMZ into the pathologically affected brain areas and thus represents a central obstacle to successful glioblastoma therapy.

TAMEPs promote blood-tumo-barrier (BTB) formation, which prevents the transfer of therapeutics from the bloodstream into the GBM.

Funding from the Anni Hofmann Foundation enabled us to show that a cell type we recently characterized (tumor associated cells with a myeloid-like expression profile; TAMEP) is significantly involved in the formation of the blood tumor barrier (BTB). Over the past funding period, we were able to characterize the TAMEP cell biologically and narrow down therapeutically relevant target structures. In the current funding period, we are now using initial, preclinical treatments to contain BTB in the glioblastoma model and to make this tumor form accessible to improved adjuvant therapy.

We are currently developing pharmacological methods that can reduce TAMEP-mediated BTB formation.

This means that classic chemotherapy drugs and new, targeted treatment methods can achieve a better therapeutic effect.