Accreditation/Credit Designation

Physicians' Education Resource®, LLC, is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Physicians' Education Resource®, LLC, designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Physicians' Education Resource®, LLC is approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #16669 for 2.0 Contact Hours.

Acknowledgment of Commercial Support

This activity is supported by an educational grant from Novocure.

Provider and Caregiver Connection™: Addressing Patient Concerns While Managing Glioblastoma

Release Date: September 29, 2017
Expiration Date: September 29, 2018
Media: Internet - based

Activity Overview

Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) remains one of the most challenging problems to address in all of oncology. Survival outcomes are modest at best, and there have been numerous obstacles to the development of effective strategies to manage GBM. This educational activity has the dual objectives of updating healthcare providers on the latest advances influencing patient care, as well as bringing greater attention to the patient perspective along the continuum of care (eg, screening, diagnosis, information gathering, initiation of treatment, disease progression, eligibility and enrollment in clinical trials, palliation). This will be accomplished through a combination of didactic presentation (featuring audio clips of experts providing their perspectives on the state of the art in GBM management) and a patient panel discussion.

Acknowledgment of Commercial Support

This activity is supported by an educational grant from Novocure.

CME/CE Activity Table of Contents

  • Current Treatment Options in Glioblastoma
  • Incorporation of Tumor Treating Fields Into Treatment Paradigms
  • Assessment of Targeted/Antiangiogenic Therapies for Glioblastoma
  • Assessment of Immunotherapy Options for Glioblastoma
  • Case Scenarios
  • Treatment Toxicities and Patient Communication
  • Clinical Trials
  • Patient Panel Discussion Video

Instructions For This Activity & Receiving Credit

  • You will need to login to participate in the activity.
  • Each presentation may contain an interactive question(s). You may move forward through the presentation; however, you may not go back to change answers or review videos/content until you finish the presentation.
  • At the end of the activity, "educational content/video" will be available for your reference.
  • In order to receive a CME/CE certificate, participants must complete the activity.
  • Complete the posttest and pass with a score of 70% or higher, complete the evaluation and then click on request for credit. Participants may immediately download a CME/CE certificate upon completion of these steps.

Target Audience

This educational activity is directed toward radiation, surgical, medical and neuro-oncologists, nurse practitioners, nurses, and physician assistants involved in the treatment and management of patients with GBM. Pharmacists, researchers, fellows, and other healthcare professionals interested in the treatment of GBM may also participate.

Educational Objectives

At the conclusion of this activity, you should be better prepared to:

  • Discuss current and emerging evidence concerning strategies and technologies for the treatment and management of patients with GBM
  • Explain the mechanism of action of therapies and technologies that have been applied to the management of GBM
  • Apply practical aspects related to integrating Tumor Treating Field therapy and other novel approaches into evolving treatment paradigms for patients with GBM
  • Incorporate skills that promote effective communication and coordination of care between the provider and the patient/caregiver in the management of GBM

Faculty, Staff, and Planners' Disclosures


David A. Reardon, MD
Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Clinical Director, Center for Neuro-Oncology
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Boston, MA

Disclosure: Grant/Research Support: Celldex Therapeutics, Incyte, Midatech, Acerta Pharma, Agenus, EMD Serono, Inovio, Tragara. Consultant: AbbVie, Agenus, Amgen, BMS, Cavion, Celldex, EMD Serono, Genentech/Roche, Inovio, Juno Pharmaceuticals, Merck, Midatech, Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Novartis, Novocure, Oxigene, Regeneron, Stemline Therapeutics. Speakers Bureau: BMS, Genentech/Roche, Merck


Timothy Cloughesy, MD
Professor and Director
UCLA Neuro-Oncology Program
Department of Neurology
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Los Angeles, CA

Disclosure: Consultant: VBL, Insys, Roche, Human Longevity, Sunovion, Boston Biomedical, Alexion, Wellcome Trust, Novogen, Novocure, Tocagen, BMS, AbbVie, GW Pharma, Cortice

Rimas V Lukas, MD
Associate Chief, Neuro-Oncology Division
Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern Medicine
Chicago, Il

Disclosure: AbbVie, AstraZeneca, ZIOPHARM, Arbor Pharmaceuticals. Meeting, travel to present research: Roche.

Sandra Ruland, RN, BSN, OCN
Program Nurse, Neuro-Oncology
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Boston, MA

Disclosure: No relevant financial relationships with commercial interests to disclose

Connie Etheridge (Patient Interviewee)
Ben Etheridge (Caregiver Interviewee)

Connie Etheridge and Ben Etheridge have no relevant financial relationships with commercial interests to disclose.

The following individuals have no relevant financial relationships with commercial interests:
The staff of PER®.

Disclosure Policy and Resolution of Conflicts of Interest (COI)

It is the policy of PER® to ensure the fair balance, independence, objectivity, and scientific objectivity in all of our CME/CE activities. In accordance with ACCME guidelines, PER® requires everyone who is in a position to control the content of an educational activity, including spouses/partners, to disclose all relevant financial relationships with any commercial interest to participants as part of the activity planning process. PER® has implemented mechanisms to identify and resolve all conflicts of interest prior to release of this activity.

Off-Label Disclosure and Disclaimer

This CME/CE activity may or may not discuss investigational, unapproved, or off-label use of drugs. Participants are advised to consult prescribing information for any products discussed. The information provided in this CME/CE activity is for continuing medical education purposes only and is not meant to substitute for the independent medical judgment of a physician relative to diagnostic and treatment options for a specific patient's medical condition.

The opinions expressed in the content are solely those of the individual faculty members and do not reflect those of Physicians' Education Resource®, LLC, or any of the companies that provided commercial support for this activity.

PER Pulse™ Recap (1 of 3)

Initial Treatment Options in Glioblastoma
Clinical outcomes for patients with glioblastoma remain ominous, with less than one-third of patients surviving beyond 1 year and less than 5% surviving 5 years out.1 The current standard for patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma begins with maximal safe surgical resection if feasible, with previous studies showing the efficacy of resection for survival outcomes, particularly those with good performance status (PS).2,3 Gross total removal of these infiltrative tumors is especially challenging, given the need to preserve patient functioning as much as possible. After surgery, fractionated external beam radiation therapy is used as a standard therapy based upon early studies.4,5 Temozolomide is also commonly administered as part of treatment protocols for patients with glioblastoma. Tumor treating fields have also been incorporated into the treatment guidelines for patients with supratentorial disease as a class 2A recommendation in the adjuvant setting and a class 2B recommendation for recurrent disease.1

There are several tumor testing options that can help to guide initial treatment for patients with glioblastoma. Imaging with MRI may provide insight into tumor burden, as well as patterns of growth and potential deficits that the patient may be facing. Metabolic imaging modalities are also available, such as positron emission tomography scans and spectroscopy. Genetic factors may also be helpful in guiding therapy. The molecular O6-methylguanine-DNA-methyltransferase marker predicts a greater likelihood of deriving benefit from temozolomide therapy. This is the lone predictive marker that has been established thus far in the treatment of glioblastoma. The optimal duration of temozolomide has not yet been established. There does not appear to be additional benefit for extending temozolomide beyond 6 months.6 Timothy Cloughesy, MD and David Reardon, MD discuss initial treatment considerations and the incorporation of new treatment technology for patients with glioblastoma. For more details, please visit


  1. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology. Central Nervous System Cancer. Version 1.2017. Accessed September 18, 2017.
  2. Lacroix M, Abi-Said D, Fourney DR, et al. A multivariate analysis of 416 patients with glioblastoma multiforme: prognosis, extent of resection, and survival. J Neurosurg. 2001;95(2):190-198.
  3. Li YM, Suki D, Hess K, Sawaya R. The influence of maximum safe resection of glioblastoma on survival in 1229 patients: can we do better than gross-total resection? J Neurosurg. 2016;124(4):977-988. doi: 10.3171/2015.5.JNS142087.
  4. Walker MD, Alexander E Jr, Hunt WE, et al. Evaluation of BCNU and/or radiotherapy in the treatment of anaplastic gliomas. A cooperative clinical trial. J Neurosurg. 1978;49(3):333-343.
  5. Kristiansen K, Hagen S, Kollevold T, et al. Combined modality therapy of operated astrocytomas grade III and IV. Confirmation of the value of postoperative irradiation and lack of potentiation of bleomycin on survival time: a prospective multicenter trial of the Scandinavian Glioblastoma Study Group. Cancer. 1981;47(4):649-652.
  6. Blumenthal DT, Gorlia T, Gilbert MR, et al. Is more better? The impact of extended adjuvant temozolomide in newly diagnosed glioblastoma: a secondary analysis of EORTC and NRG Oncology/RTOG. Neuro Oncol. 2017;19(8):1119-1126. doi:10.1093/neuonc/nox025.

PER Pulse™ Recap (2 of 3)

Precision oncology is helping to hone treatment approaches for patients with glioblastoma. Targeted therapies have been investigated to help improve survival outcomes for patients with glioblastoma, which was one of the initial tumor types analyzed by the Cancer Genome Atlas Network.1 This has helped to define some of the key abnormalities and pathways that may serve as treatment targets: the receptor tyrosine kinase/MAP kinase/PI3kinase pathway, the retinoblastoma pathway, and P53.2 Isocitrate dehydrogenase mutations are also being targeted,2 and other growth factors have emerged as potential targets for patients with glioblastoma.

Anti-VEGF agents, such as bevacizumab, have also been evaluated in the treatment of patients with glioblastoma, both in the recurrent and first-line settings.3,4 Glioblastoma tumors are highly vascularized, producing several proangiogenic factors, including VEGF. VEGF inhibitors inhibit tumor growth and brain edema associated with vasogenic activity.5 An OS benefit with this line of therapy has yet to be identified.4 It is also used in combination with immunotherapy, as a means of controlling the edema that may be associated with immunotherapy.

Immunotherapy options for patients with glioblastoma are an active area of clinical investigation, with several studies looking at checkpoint inhibitor therapy. Other studies are looking at ways to incorporate vaccine therapy for patients with glioblastoma.6 Chimeric antigen therapy treatments are being pursued as well. Immunotherapy options have generally been well tolerated in clinical studies, although durable responses remain elusive.6 Several obstacles complicate the implementation of immunotherapy, including immunogenic side effects and identification of drugs that can penetrate the blood-brain barrier, appropriate immunogenic antigens to target, and biomarkers.6 Timothy Cloughesy, MD and David Reardon, MD discuss the potential of investigational therapies for patients with glioblastoma; for more details, please visit


  1. Brennan CW, Verhaak RG, McKenna A, et al; TCGA Research Network. The somatic genomic landscape of glioblastoma [erratum in Cell. 2014;157(3):753]. Cell. 2013;155(2):462-477. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2013.09.034.
  2. Touat M, Idbaih A, Sanson M, Ligon KL. Glioblastoma targeted therapy: updated approaches from recent biological insights. Ann Oncol. 2017;28(7):1457-1472. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdx106.
  3. Tipping M, Eickhoff J, Ian Robins H. Clinical outcomes in recurrent glioblastoma with bevacizumab therapy: an analysis of the literature. J Clin Neurosci. 2017;44:101-106. doi: 10.1016/j.jocn.2017.06.070.
  4. Lombardi G, Pambuku A, Bellu L, et al. Effectiveness of antiangiogenic drugs in glioblastoma patients: a systematic review and analysis of randomized clinical trials. Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2017;111:94-102. doi: 10.1016/j.critrevonc.2017.01.018.
  5. Gil-Gil MJ, Mesia C, Rey M, Bruna J. Bevacizumab for the treatment of glioblastoma. Clin Med Insights Oncol. 2013;7:123-135. doi: 10.4137/CMO.S8503.
  6. Huang B, Zhang H, Lijuan G, et al. Advances in immunotherapy for glioblastoma multiforme. J Immunol Res. 2017;2017:3597613. doi: 10.1155/2017/3597613.

PER Pulse™ Recap (3 of 3)

Clinicians involved in the care of patients with glioblastoma must master several factors regarding patient communication. The successful management of these patients requires a multidisciplinary effort coordinated to accurately relay prognostic information for both patients and caregivers. Most patients do not have full prognostic awareness of the incurable nature of malignant gliomas. Therefore, patients with malignant gliomas who have memory impairment desire more prognostic information more frequently than those who do not have memory impairment, according to the results of a recent exploratory study.1

In addition to discussions regarding prognosis, it is important for clinicians to be able to have detailed discussions with their patients regarding potential adverse events (AEs) associated with different treatment modalities used for glioblastoma. Radiation is a cornerstone of therapy for initial management, and the cumulative effects can result in a variety of clinical manifestations, including patient somnolence, which may persist after the course of radiotherapy (RT). Temozolomide is an oral agent used in the treatment of glioblastoma that may produce such AEs as nausea, hair loss, fatigue, vomiting, headaches, and constipation. Lymphocytopenia can also occur with the use of temozolomide, and as opportunistic infections are a possibility, antibiotic prophylaxis against Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia should be administered when temozolomide is given with RT.2 The faculty discuss strategies to optimize communication with patients who have glioblastoma, as well as management of treatment-related AEs. This activity features an extensive patient and caregiver interview, conducted by Dr. Reardon, which explores many features of glioblastoma management and emphasizes the perspective of the patient when facing challenges.


  1. Diamond EL, Priferson HG, Correa DC, et al. Prognostic awareness, prognostic communication, and cognitive function in patients with malignant glioma [published online June 22, 2017]. Neuro Oncol. doi: 10.1093/neuonc/nox117.
  2. NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology. Central Nervous System Cancer. Version 1.2017. Accessed September 18, 2017.

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