DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Doctors at Dayton Children’s Hospital could be on the forefront of curing brain cancer.
The hospital is using a new tumor preservation method and is one of only a few hospitals in the world to contribute to ground-breaking research.
Dr. Robert Lober says Dayton Children’s developed a new way of preserving and growing removed brain tumors, allowing the tissue to be studied more closely.
Prior to this, tumor tissue was frozen and doctors would lose valuable “information” because of that. That means doctors and researchers have never really had much to work with.
Neurosurgeons like Robert Lober and his patients will soon change how researchers fight brain cancer.
“They are not just cells in a dish. They have meaning for me. I know the child that they came out of. I know what the child has faced because of those cells in a dish,” said Lober.
20 tumors from Miami Valley patients will be made available to the Children’s Brain Tumor Tissue Consortium (CBTTC).
One of the tumors will come from 12-year-old Blake Barr.
“I just thought it would be a normal trip to the hospital. I thought I would walk in, they would check me and I’d be home,” said Barr.
He was just 10 when doctors told Blake and his mother Amberlyn that Blake had a softball seized brain tumor.
“I was in shock. Something was hidden in my son and had no idea,” said Amberlyn.
Thankfully, Blake recovered with his family is by his side. He’ll tell you it’s almost like nothing happened.
“I had to do radiation treatment. Proton radiation. It was a tough journey but I still made it through,” said Blake.
Dr. Lober says children like Blake could help researchers find a cure for brain cancer.
With a more centralized information and testing bank, who knows what could happen.
“This is a level of detail that has not been done anywhere else,” said Dr. Lober.
Right now the new database has more than 1,000 patients in it that has 30 different types of tumors. They expect the numbers to grow.