What are the types of gliomas?

There are many different types of gliomas, which are grouped by the types of glial cells where they begin. Types of glial cells include astrocyte cells, ependymal cells and oligodendrocyte cells.

The brain tumor specialists at the Institute are experienced in treating all types of gliomas, including:

  • Astrocytomas. These develop out of astrocyte cells. Types of astrocytomas include:
  • Glioblastomas. A fast-growing, cancerous tumor that usually affects adults.
  • Pilocytic astrocytomas. A usually slow-growing, noncancerous tumor that typically affects children.
  • Pleomorphic xanthroastrocytomas (PXAs). A very rare type of astrocytoma that can be either slow-growing and noncancerous or fast-growing and cancerous.
  • Oligodendrogliomas. These begin in oligodendrocyte cells.
  • Gangliogliomas. This is a rare type of glioma that develops out of glial cells and nerve cells (the cells that transport messages from the body to the brain and back). Most gangliogliomas are slow-growing and benign, but a small percentage can grow quickly and become cancerous. It is the most aggressive form of adult brain cancer.
  • Astroblastoma. This is a rare type of tumor that begins in astroblasts – primitive cells that become astrocyte cells. Astroblastomas can be either slow-growing and noncancerous or fast-growing and cancerous.
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