5-aminolevulinic Acid Trial to Correlate Intraoperative Fluorescence Intensity with Histologic Cellularity

A presentation at the 2015 American Association of Neurological Surgeons Annual Scientific Meeting


Newswise — WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 6, 2015) — Winner of the Stryker Neuro-oncology Award, Darryl Lau, MD, presented results from A prospective phase II clinical trial of 5-aminolevulinic acid to correlate intraoperative fluorescence intensity with histologic cellularity during the 83rd Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS).

Due to paucity of studies, a phase II clinical trial was undertaken to correlate the intensity of 5-aminolevulinic acid (ALA) fluorescence with degree of tumor cellularity during resection of high grade gliomas.

A single-center, single arm, phase II clinical trial of ALA fluorescence-guided resection of high-grade gliomas was held from August 2010 to February 2014. Biopsies were graded on a four-point scale (zero = none to three = highest) based on ALA fluorescence intensity by the neurosurgeon and independently based on tumor cellularity by a neuropathologist.

The correlation of ALA fluorescence intensity to tumor cellularity and adverse events proved interesting. A total of 211 biopsies from 59 patients were included: 79.7 percent glioblastoma. ALA intensity-three correlated with tumor presence in 97.4 percent of cases and ALA intensity of zero correlated with tumor absence in 93.0 percent of cases. For all tumor types, glioblastoma, high grade and recurrent tumors, ALA fluorescence intensity-three correlated strongly with cellularity grade three; correlation coefficients were 0.65, 0.66, 0.65, and 0.62, respectively. Specificity and positive predictive value (PPV) of ALA intensity three–cellularity grade three match ranged from 95 percent to 100 percent, and 86 percent to 100 percent, respectively.

In samples without tumor, 35.4 percent had ALA fluorescence. Of those, 90.9 percent contained reactive astrocytes and atypical cells; 8.1 percent were normal brain. In non-fluorescent samples, 62.3 percent had tumor cells present. ALA associated complication was 1.7 percent.

ALA demonstrated high PPV and negative predictive value (NPV), and ALA intensity three correlated strongly with cellularity grade-three. However, even in the absence of tumor cells, reactive changes including inflammation may lead to ALA fluorescence.

Author Block: Shawn L. Hervey-Jumper, MD; Susan M. Chang, MD; Annette Molinaro, PhD; Michael W. McDermott, MD, FAANS; Joanna Phillips, MD, PhD; Mitchel S. Berger, MD, FAANS

Disclosure: The author reported no conflicts of interest.

Media Representatives: The 2015 AANS Annual Scientific Meeting press kit includes releases on highlighted scientific research, AANS officers and award winners, Neurosurgery Awareness Week and other relevant information about this year’s program. Those releases will also be posted under the “Media” area on the 2015 AANS Annual Scientific Meeting website. If you have interest in a topic related to neurosurgery or would like to interview a neurosurgeon — either onsite or via telephone — during this year’s event, please contact Alice Kelsey, AANS director of marketing and communications, via email at aik@aans.org.

About the 2015 AANS Annual Scientific Meeting: Attended by neurosurgeons, neurosurgical residents, medical students, neuroscience nurses, clinical specialists, physician assistants, allied health professionals and other medical professionals, the AANS Annual Scientific Meeting is the largest gathering of neurosurgeons in the nation, with an emphasis on the field’s latest research and technological advances. More than 1,200 scientific abstracts were presented for review at the 2015 AANS Annual Scientific Meeting, and the scientific presentations given at this year’s event represent cutting-edge examples of the incredible developments taking place within the field of neurosurgery. Additional information about the 2015 AANS Annual Scientific Meeting and the meeting program can be found here.

Founded in 1931 as the Harvey Cushing Society, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) is a scientific and educational association with more than 9,000 members worldwide. The AANS is dedicated to advancing the specialty of neurological surgery in order to provide the highest quality of neurosurgical care to the public. Fellows of the AANS are board-certified by the American Board of Neurological Surgery, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, or the Mexican Council of Neurological Surgery, A.C. Neurosurgery is the medical specialty concerned with the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of disorders that affect the spinal column, spinal cord, brain, nervous system and peripheral nerves.

For more information, visit www.AANS.org.

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