Phoenix-based Barrow Neurological Institute treats more brain tumors than any other hospital in the nation. Recently it launched a $50 million research program to identify new treatment options for glioblastoma—the deadliest form of brain cancer—which claimed the lives of John McCain, Edward Kennedy and Beau Biden.
The new Ivy Brain Tumor Center at Barrow is the result of the single-largest grant in the history of brain-tumor research: Funding from the Ben and Catherine Ivy Foundation will be used to dramatically accelerate drug discovery and clinical testing for glioblastoma, at the newly formed Center. Between 1998 and 2014, 78 investigational brain-tumor drugs entered advanced clinical-trial evaluation—and 75 failed. This lack of new drugs led Dr. Nader Sanai—Barrow’s director of neurosurgical oncology, and the director of the new Center—to launch, in 2016, a bold approach for treating glioblastoma, with Barrow’s “Phase 0 (zero)” trials.