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Resident Dr. Adam Sonabend Gets Attention for Brain Tumor Research

Neurosurgical Resident Dr.Adam Sonabend

This year in New Orleans at the 81st Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS), Neurosurgical Resident Dr. Adam Sonabend was invited to give an oral presentation on the brain tumor research he has been doing here at Columbia.

Dr. Sonabend has been working with neurosurgeon Dr. Jeffrey Bruce in the Bartoli Brain Tumor Lab to find better ways to treat a rare but deadly brain tumor, the central nervous system hemangiopericytoma.

These tumors are unique in that they can metastasize outside of the central nervous system (CNS). A protective barrier exists between the CNS, which is made up of the brain and spinal cord, and the rest of the body. CNS hemangiopericytomas, unlike other types of brain cancer, can jump this barrier and spread to other parts of the body. This makes them unpredictable and difficult to treat.

At a plenary session of the CNS/AANS Tumor Section in New Orleans, Dr. Sonabend said, “Due to the relatively uncommon nature of these tumors, it is hard to learn about their clinical behavior in a single institution case series. To deal with this limitation, we used the SEER database, which samples 26% of the whole US population. The work suggests that radiation therapy is beneficial for treating patients with CNS hemangiopericytoma. Dr. Sonabend’s presentation was followed by an illuminating question and answer session.

We have just heard that Dr. Sonabend’s work has been accepted for publication by the Journal of Neurosurgery and they are currently working on an editorial about this research.

Good work Dr. Sonabend!

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