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Neuro Oncol DOI:10.1093/neuonc/noab203

Telomerase as a therapeutic target in glioblastoma.

Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsAquilanti, E, Kageler, L, Wen, PY, Meyerson, M
JournalNeuro Oncol
Date Published2021 Sep 02

Glioblastoma is the most common primary malignant brain tumor in adults and it continues to have a dismal prognosis. The development of targeted therapeutics has been particularly challenging, in part due to a limited number of oncogenic mutations and significant intra-tumoral heterogeneity. TERT promoter mutations were first discovered in melanoma and later found to be present in up to 80% of glioblastoma samples. They are also frequent clonal alterations in this tumor. TERT promoter mutations are one of the mechanisms for telomerase reactivation, providing cancers with cellular immortality. Telomerase is a reverse transcriptase ribonucleoprotein complex that maintains telomere length in cells with high proliferative ability. In this article we present genomic and pre-clinical data that supports telomerase as a potential "Achilles' heel" for glioblastoma. We also summarize prior experience with anti-telomerase agents and potential new approaches to tackle this target.


Alternate JournalNeuro Oncol
PubMed ID34473298