Purpose of review: Temozolomide is a first-line treatment for newly diagnosed glioblastoma. In this review, we will examine the use of temozolomide in other contexts for treating gliomas, including recurrent glioblastoma, glioblastoma in the elderly, diffuse low- and high-grade gliomas, non-diffuse gliomas, diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG), ependymoma, pilocytic astrocytoma, and pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma.
Recent findings: Temozolomide improved survival in older patients with glioblastoma, anaplastic gliomas regardless of 1p/19q deletion status, and progressive ependymomas. Temozolomide afforded less toxicity and comparable efficacy to radiation in high-risk low-grade gliomas and to platinum-based chemotherapy in pediatric high-grade gliomas. The success of temozolomide in promoting survival has expanded beyond glioblastoma to benefit patients with non-glioblastoma tumors. Identifying practical biomarkers for predicting temozolomide susceptibility, and establishing complementary agents for chemosensitizing tumors to temozolomide, will be key next steps for future success.
Keywords: Bevacizumab; DIPG; Ependymoma; GBM in the elderly; Low grade glioma; Pilocytic astrocytoma; Pleomorphic xanthoastrocytoma; Temozolomide.