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BACKGROUND: Terminology to describe extent of resection in glioblastoma is inconsistent across clinical trials. A surgical classification system was previously proposed based upon residual contrast-enhancing (CE) tumor. We aimed to (1) explore the prognostic utility of the classification system and (2) define how much removed non-CE tumor translates into a survival benefit.

METHODS: The international RANO resect group retrospectively searched previously compiled databases from 7 neuro-oncological centers in the USA and Europe for patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma per WHO 2021 classification. Clinical and volumetric information from pre- and postoperative MRI were collected.

RESULTS: We collected 1,008 patients with newly diagnosed IDHwt glioblastoma. 744 IDHwt glioblastomas were treated with radiochemotherapy per EORTC-26981/22981 (TMZ/RT→TMZ) following surgery. Among these homogenously treated patients, lower absolute residual tumor volumes (in cm3) were favorably associated with outcome: patients with "maximal CE resection" (class 2) had superior outcome compared to patients with "submaximal CE resection" (class 3) or "biopsy" (class 4). Extensive resection of non-CE tumor (≤5 cm3 residual non-CE tumor) was associated with better survival among patients with complete CE resection, thus defining class 1 ("supramaximal CE resection"). The prognostic value of the resection classes was retained on multivariate analysis when adjusting for molecular and clinical markers.

CONCLUSIONS: The proposed "RANO categories for extent of resection in glioblastoma" are highly prognostic and may serve for stratification within clinical trials. Removal of non-CE tumor beyond the CE tumor borders may translate into additional survival benefit, providing a rationale to explicitly denominate such "supramaximal CE resection."


classification, EOR, glioblastoma, outcome, surgical resection



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