Donations Support Brain Cancer Research

Donations Support Brain Cancer Research

Support the Ivy Brain Tumor Center’s mission to find a cure for brain cancer.

Donate to Brain Cancer Research to Help Us Find a Cure

Discovering Hope. Every Day.

The traditional standard of care for aggressive brain cancers like glioblastoma is not working. Surgery followed by an extended course of chemo or radiation isn’t curing brain cancers. For most patients, the tumor just keeps growing. Incredibly low survival rates have not improved in three decades: less than 5 percent of those with the most common malignant brain tumor – glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) are still alive after 5 years. We must do better for this community.

This is the mission of the Ivy Brain Tumor Center at the Barrow Neurological Institute, to find a cure for brain cancer within the next decade. The Ivy Brain Tumor Center personalizes brain tumor therapy, where the molecular underpinnings of each unique patient dictate their course of treatment. Patients come to the Ivy Center from around the world to gain access to its array of clinical trials, finding treatment options when they have been told there are none.

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Brain Tumors Are Winning

0 More than 1.4M patients worldwide are struggling with malignant brain tumors
0 For patients with glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), 9 out of 10 will lose their battle with the disease within five years
0 Between 1998 and 2014, only 3 out of 78 investigational brain tumor drugs that were evaluated in advanced clinical trials gained FDA approval.
Researcher at the Ivy Brain Tumor Center

Your Donations Contribute to Novel Research That Improves Patients’ Lives

The Ivy Brain Tumor Center is committed to pushing boundaries in brain cancer research and treatment. The Center conducts cutting-edge, experimental research never seen before in the field of brain cancer research. As the largest Phase 0 clinical trials program in the world, it is pioneering a novel approach that bucks decades of precedent – accelerated, early-phase clinical trials that quickly identify drugs that deliver on their promise, while also rapidly eliminating those that do not.

See what we achieved with your brain cancer donations in research and patient care last year by downloading the FY23 Ivy Brain Tumor Center Stewardship Report below.



Focused On Finding a Cure for Brain Cancer

Thanks to the generosity of donors, we are fast approaching this goal. The Ivy Brain Tumor Center team of brain tumor specialists is dedicated to innovative research to accelerate the discovery of new, more effective drugs for brain cancer while providing unparalleled care to patients.


Patients Who Have Been Told There’s No Hope Find Treatment Options Here

Brain cancer is hard. Every patient’s cancer is slightly different, unlike tumors in other parts of the body. If a tumor returns after surgery, it may be different yet. Any single drug is unlikely to be effective for all patients. In addition, the brain is designed to keep bad stuff out. This blood-brain barrier, however, can also keep live-saving drugs from reaching a tumor.

How Do We Overcome These Difficult Realities?

Phase 0 Clinical Trials Program

Your brain cancer donations support Barrow’s new approach to brain tumor research: the Phase 0/2 trial, which tests drugs in as little as four months, with as few as 15 patients, and at a fraction of the conventional cost. The Ivy Brain Tumor Center is home to the largest, first of its kind for neuro-oncology, Phase 0 clinical trials program in the world, an approach pioneered by Nadar Sanai, MD, the Center’s director of neurosurgical oncology.

In Phase 0, a patient is matched to an experimental drug combination based on the genetics of archival tissue from their first surgery. They then receive a small exposure to this drug combination in the days before surgery. During the operation, doctors collect tumor tissue, blood and spinal fluid, then immediately test the samples to determine if:

  1. Did the drug penetrate the tumor?
  2. Did the drug have its intended effect?

If the answer to both of these questions is yes, then the patient moves forward with receiving the drug combination therapeutically for a longer period of time – advancing to the next phase of the trial. If the drug combination has no effect on the tumor, the patient can enroll in another clinical trial without losing time or receiving an ineffective treatment. Ultimately, Ivy Phase 0 clinical trials mean that patients, regardless of diagnosis, can have individualized treatment in a fraction of the time and costs associated with traditional drug research and development.

Brain cancer donations to Barrow Neurological Foundations support research at the Ivy Brain Tumor Center.

Clinical Trials

The Ivy Brain Tumor Center’s brain tumor research efforts lead in other novel approaches, further advancing the mission of finding a cure. Recently, the Center dosed the first patient worldwide in a Phase 0 clinical trial of sonodynamic therapy, a new modality that uses MRI-guided focused ultrasound to selectively activate a newly developed brain tumor drug. This groundbreaking study creates a noninvasive treatment option for patients with recurrent glioblastoma and other high-grade gliomas. It also overcomes the most challenging part of treating brain cancer, breaking through the protective shell around the brain, called the blood-brain barrier. Dr. Sanai reports that initial results have been positive.

Other new trials test whether niraparib, a drug developed to fight ovarian cancer, could also be effective against glioblastoma, and whether a new AstraZeneca drug for patients with recurring gliomas penetrates the brain-blood barrier and increases the effectiveness of radiation.

This gives the community of people with brain cancer hope of a better chance for success than in standard, extended trials. With the help of your donations to support these efforts, we advance the Center’s mission.

Research Advancements

Testing Innovative Direct-to-Tumor Drug Delivery Method

The SSIAI technique aims to deliver a drug directly to the tumor, bypassing the blood-brain barrier and minimizing systemic side effects.

Novel Drug-Device Combination for Glioblastoma

In collaboration with SonALAsense, the Ivy Brain Tumor Center is testing a novel, non-invasive drug-device combination, sonodynamic therapy, for recurrent glioblastoma.

Liquid Biopsy Program Offers Real-Time Insights

Integrating this technique into the Ivy Center’s Phase 0 clinical trial workflow provides doctors with real-time insights and offers another tool in the fight against brain cancer.

Building on Success – New Global Headquarters

The new Ivy Brain Tumor Center global headquarters will open in 2024, making it the world’s largest translational research center dedicated solely to brain tumor drug development and treatment.