Cruising Review

PEMF Gliomas

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Received: 22 March 2022 | Revised: 7 July 2022 | Accepted: 19 July 2022 DOI: 10.1002/cam4.5112
Is extremely low frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields applicable to gliomas? A literature review of the underlying mechanisms and application of extremely low frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields
Mengqian Huang1 | Parker Li2 | Feng Chen1 | Zehao Cai1 | Shoubo Yang1 | Xiaohong Zheng1 | Wenbin Li1
1Cancer Center, Beijing Tiantan Hospital, Capital Medical University, Beijing, China
2Clinical Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai, China
Wenbin Li, Cancer Center, Beijing Tiantan Hospital, Capital Medical University, No.119, Nansihuan West Road, Fengtai District, Beijing 100070, China.
Funding information
Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission, Grant/Award Number: J200003; China Academy
of Chinese Medical Sciences, Grant/ Award Number: 2-759-02-DR; National Science and Technology Major Project of China, Grant/Award Number: 2016ZX09101017
Gliomas are primary brain malignancies that are derived from glial or precursor cells, accounting for approximately 80.8% of malignant brain tumors, and approximately 25.1% of all central nervous system tumors.1 Among the deadliest forms of brain cancers in adults, glioblastoma (GBM) is the most aggressive diffuse glioma with a short median survival of 14.4 months after standard therapy.1–3
The therapeutic options available to patients with gliomas include surgery, radiotherapy (RT), and chemotherapy; however, these treatments are not as effective as expected considering the anatomical position and self-renewing tumor stem cells of gliomas.4–6 For instance, chemo- therapy is insufficient after penetrating the blood–brain- barrier (BBB). Moreover, self-renewing tumor stem cells of gliomas lead to a poor prognosis after surgery. Thus, thera- peutic options for those patients are limited currently.
Gliomas refer to a group of complicated human brain tumors with a low 5-year survival rate and limited therapeutic options. Extremely low-frequency pulsed electromagnetic field (ELF-PEMF) is a specific magnetic field featuring almost no side effects. However, the application of ELF-PEMF in the treatment of gliomas is rare. This review summarizes five significant underlying mechanisms including calcium ions, autophagy, apoptosis, angiogenesis, and reactive oxygen species, and applications of ELF-PEMF in glioma treatment from a clinical practice per- spective. In addition, the prospects of ELF-PEMF in combination with conven- tional therapy for the treatment of gliomas are reviewed. This review benefits any specialists, especially oncologists, interested in this new therapy because it can help treat patients with gliomas properly.
electromagnetic therapy, extremely low frequency pulsed electromagnetic fields, gliomas, tumor-specific frequencies
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
© 2022 The Authors. Cancer Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Cancer Medicine. 2023;12:2187–2198. | 2187

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