Neuro-Oncology 15(1):91–96, 2013
The subventricular zone (SVZ) lines the lateral ventricles and represents the origin of neural and some cancer stem cells. Tumors contacting the SVZ may be more invasive with higher potential to recruit migratory progenitor cells.
Our specific aim was to determine whether SVZ involvement in glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is associated with a higher recurrence rate and shorter overall survival.
MR imaging and clinical data from 91 patients with GBM treated at our institution were retrospectively reviewed. Tumors were classified as type I if the contrast- enhancing lesion contacted both the SVZ and cortex on pre-operative MRI, type II if only the SVZ was involved, type III if only cortex was involved, and type IV if the lesion did not contact either the SVZ or cortex. Progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival were estimated based on Kaplan-Meier calculations.
When comparing type I tumors with types II-IV, only 39% of patients with type I tumors were free of recurrence and alive at 6 months, significantly fewer than for all other types combined (67%; P = .01). PFS at 6 months was also less, at only 47% among patients with SVZ-positive tumors, compared with 69% in the SVZ-negative group (P = .002). Patients with SVZ involvement also demonstrated a more rapid time to progression, compared with those not involving the SVZ (P = .003). Patients with GBM involving the SVZ have decreased overall survival and PFS, which may have prognostic and therapeutic implications.