In World First, Teenage Boy is Cured of Lethal Brain Cancer

Lucas was six years old when he was tragically diagnosed with a rare type of brain tumor. Right then, the prognosis was bleak. French physician Jacques Grill remembers the agonizing meeting he had with Lucas’s parents, during which he broke the devastating news of their son’s terminal brain cancer.

After seven years, Lucas, who is now 13 years old, is a ray of optimism.

Amazingly, Science Alert reports, there is no sign of the once-debilitating malignancy. Lucas is a Belgian youngster who is the first child in history to overcome brainstem glioma. The researchers at the Gustave Roussy Cancer Center in Paris have proven that the cancer is aggressive.

Lucas’s tenacity astounds Dr. Grill, leader of the center’s brain tumor program, who says, “Lucas defied all odds.” I observed as the tumor vanished entirely across several MRI scans. Formally known as diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), this tumor affects up to 100 children in France and about 300 children in the United States annually.

Other kids are battling back after Lucas became the first person to successfully overcome this kind of brain cancer.

Progress is recognized as the medical community observes International Childhood Cancer Day. Nowadays, more than 85% of kids with this kind of brain cancer survive for more than five years after their diagnosis. Prospects are still dismal for patients with DIPG, though; the majority pass away within a year. Just 10% of patients make it past two years, even with efforts to slow the tumor’s fast growth with radiation therapy.

A trip into the uncharted territory for Lucas and his family

And now for Lucas and his family, who traveled to France to sign him up for the BIOMEDE experiment. an endeavor looking into new DIPG therapies. Lucas amazed doctors with how well he responded to the medicine everolimus that was given to him at random by completely disappearing his tumor across several MRI scans.


Still, the tumor didn’t materialize when Lucas stopped taking the drug a year and a half ago. An unprecedented phenomenon in the history of medicine. Dr. Grill suggests that the tumor’s uncommon mutation increased its responsiveness to the medication, which accounts for Lucas’s remarkable recovery.

Since his condition is unique, researchers look into it more.

Researchers are intrigued by Lucas’s case and investigate further, examining genetic abnormalities and growing tumor organoids in lab conditions. The research’s supervisor, Marie-Anne Debily, is upbeat and sees a possible breakthrough where Lucas’s molecular differences could open the door to efficient therapies. “Finding a medication that affects tumor cells in the same way as these cellular alterations will be the next step.” Says she.

“I don’t know of any other case like him in the world,” stated Dr. Grill. We think the incredibly unusual mutation in Lucas’s tumor made its cells significantly more drug-sensitive. “Lucas is thought to have had a specific form of the disease,” he continued. To successfully replicate what occurred spontaneously with him in other patients through medicine, we must comprehend what and why.

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