What is the role of convection-enhanced delivery (CED) in the treatment of glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)?

Updated: Jul 28, 2021
  • Author: Jeffrey N Bruce, MD; Chief Editor: Herbert H Engelhard, III, MD, PhD, FACS, FAANS  more...
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A major hindrance to the use of chemotherapeutic agents for brain tumors is that the blood-brain barrier effectively excludes many agents from the central nervous system. This has inspired the development of novel methods of intracranial drug delivery to deliver higher concentrations of chemotherapeutic agents to the tumor cells while avoiding the adverse systemic effects of these medications.

Pressure-driven infusion of therapeutic agents through an intracranial catheter, also known as convection-enhanced delivery (CED), has the advantage of delivering drugs along a pressure gradient rather than by simple diffusion. CED has been used to deliver both conventional chemotherapy drugs (eg, paclitaxel, topotecan) and investigational agents (eg, interleukin-4–Pseudomonas exotoxin fusion protein). Although preclinical and clinical studies involving CED has shown that it is safe, it has proved only somewhat effective, and has technical shortcomings that need to be addressed. [124]

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