This is a very rare but fast-growing tumour of the central nervous system which usually occurs in childhood.
It can occur anywhere in the brain or the spinal cord and the symptoms vary according to its location, thus making it more difficult to diagnose.
AT/RT is responsible for around 3% of paediatric brain tumours.
AT/RT is a very difficult tumour to treat and, unfortunately, the outcomes remain poor. In general, older children with AT/RT tend to do better than young children. Cure rates for children over 3 are about 70%, while cure rates for children younger than 3 remain below 10%.
However, recent studies have reported that patients with newly diagnosed AT/RT had remission for 60-72 months after treatment with a specific combination of surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. Clinical trials are being carried out to assess the best combination.