The Neuro-Oncology program and clinic is a multidisciplinary clinical and research effort including specialists in neurology and neuro-oncology, neurosurgery, radiation oncology, medical oncology, neuroradiology, neuropathology, pharmacy, positron emission tomography (PET) imaging, and molecular and glial biology. The neuro-oncology program provides diagnosis and management of metastatic and non-metastatic complications of systemic cancer and primary CNS tumors. It is an integral part of the Karmanos Cancer Institute (KCI).
Dr. Geoffrey Barger is a 3-year fellowship trained neuro-oncologist. He has served as attending physician at the Detroit Medical Center and Karmanos Cancer Center from 1990 to the present. He has organized and directed the weekly Neuro-Oncology Conference since 1990. Dr. Barger served as the Co-Director of the Neuro-Oncology Multidisciplinary Team of the Karmanos Cancer Center from 2003 - 2019. Radiation oncologist Dr. Michael Dominello became Director of the Multidisciplinary team in 2020. Dr. Murali Guthikonda (neurosurgery), Dr. Natasha Robinette and Dr. Joe Joshua and Partha Chamiraju (neuroradiology), Dr. Harold Kim (radiation-oncology), and Dr. Csaba Juhasz (PET) and William Kupsky (neuropathology), are the core clinicians of the team.
While the main focus of the group has been to provide the best possible clinical care to all our patients, including the use of genetic characteristics of individual patient's tumors to help define the best treatment, there is an increasing effort on clinical trials which use this approach and laboratory and imaging research. The National Cancer Institute has funded Drs. Juhasz and Barger, to study AMT PET imaging since 2007. AMT PET imaging has proved useful in differentiating tumor from radiation injury, a notoriously difficult problem. AMT PET also helps determine response to treatment and may help us identify useful new treatments for primary brain tumors. Building on our experience with AMT PET a new tryptophan analog, F-18-Labelled fluoro-ethyl-tryptophan (FETrp) was developed for its first human use by investigators at WSU and KCI and began a clinical trial at our institute in 2022 to study brain tumors, including gliomas and metastatic tumors.
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