Friday, 26 April 2019, 03:17:28 am
Glowing chemical 'could aid brain cancer surgery'
November 05, 2018

Scientists have discovered a chemical that makes brain tumours glow pink and thus will help surgeons to remove the cancer safely.

In a trial scientists gave people glioma-a drink containing 5-ALA  which is known to accumulate in fast-growing cancer cells.

The pink glow caused by the chemical was found in people with the most aggressive cancers.

Researchers hope it will make it easier for surgeons to distinguish between cancer cells and healthy brain tissue.

For this new trial, 99 patients with suspected cancer tissues were given the drink containing 5-ALA before surgery.

The researchers caution that the study looked at patients who were already suspected to have high-grade tumours, and a larger study in which more patients have low-grade disease would provide more information on the use of this technique.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence approved the use of 5-ALA for patients with brain tumours, prior to surgery. (BBC)