Dr. Tresa McGranahan completed her PhD in molecular neurobiology at the Salk Institute studying the role of high affinity nicotinic receptors in memory and behavior. She then completed post doctoral research in neuroimmunology at Stanford University during neurology residency and Neuro Oncology fellowship. She is currently a neuro-oncologist at the University of Washington/Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Her clinical and research work focus on patients with brain tumors as well as neurologic complications of cancer.
Tumor treating fields (TTF) are an emerging use of noninvasive electrical therapy for the treatment of solid tumors. Alternating electrical fields are used in TTF to inhibit tumor cell division by preventing normal polymerization of mitotic spindles and also impairing the cleavage site of dividing cell. Different tumor cell lines have maximal effect at variable frequencies of TTF in the range of 100-300kHz. Clinically, TTF have been shown to increase local tumor control for newly diagnosed glioblastoma, recurrent glioblastoma and mesothelioma. There are ongoing clinical trials for many solid malignancies including pancreatic adenocarcinoma, hepatocellular carcinoma, meningioma and lung cancer. Electrical therapy has transformed the treatment of glioblastoma and will likely become and new modality for other advanced solid tumors.