The Glioma-Network Interface: A Review of the Relationship Between Glioma Molecular Subtype and Intratumoral Function


Neurosurgery 87:1078–1084, 2020

Gliomas are a major cause of morbidity. Direct cortical stimulation mapping offers the ability to identify functional areas within the broader neural network both cortically and subcortically. Since the World Health Organization (WHO) 2016 classification categorized gliomas into molecular subgroups with varied molecular signatures and clinical behavior, it is possible that gliomas may demonstrate rates of functional network integration.

We therefore retrospectively reviewed a data registry of 181 patients with dominant hemisphere frontal, parietal, insular, or temporal gliomas. Our goal was to test the hypothesis that WHO glioma histopathology and molecular subtype influences functional language or motor sites identified within the tumor.

Intratumoral function as determined by direct cortical and subcortical stimulation mapping was identified at the highest rate in isocitrate dehydrogenase mutant astrocytomas and oligodendrogliomas. Finally, we reviewed the emerging literature exploring the interface between functional neural networks and gliomas. These data shed light on glioma molecular and histological characteristics most commonly associated within intratumoral function.