The Brain Tumor Center of Excellence (BTCOE) was established in 2003 to develop a comprehensive academic brain tumor program at the Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center (WFBCCC). The pre-existing foundations of excellence in both clinical care and clinical research in patients with brain tumors, and a growing research interest in the field of brain tumors and brain cancer treatment, greatly facilitated the creation of the BTCOE. 

Collaborative Brain Tumor Research 

The focus of the BTCOE is on improving patient care through translational research, since most brain tumors represent unmet needs in medicine.  This goal is being accomplished in a highly collaborative environment that brings together basic scientists with clinical researchers and patient care providers to conduct translational brain tumor research. This translational research is a multidisciplinary effort crossing several scientific and clinical disciplines and involving all four Programs of the WFBCCC, at least seven departments and three universities. The BTCOE research priorities are represented by the thematic groups as follows: 

  • Clinical Research 
  • Modulation of Treatment-Induced Brain Injury/Cognitive Impairment/Quality of Life 
  • Molecular Therapeutics 
  • Bio-Anatomic Imaging 
  • Pre-Clinical Models of Disease 
  • Brain Metastases 
  • Brain Tumor Omics 
Under the leadership of BTCOE Director Dr. Waldemar Debinski, more than $40 million has been granted to neuro-oncology research at WFBCCC.  WFBCCC has historically contributed significantly to attempts at improving care of patients with primary brain tumors, especially glioblastomas (GBM), by initiating and/or participating in landmark studies.

Program Members

The translational research at the BTCOE is a multidisciplinary effort crossing several scientific and clinical disciplines. You can learn more about the key members of the program below.