Retinoblastoma, the visible CNS tumor: A review

Helen Dimaras, Timothy W. Corson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

18 Scopus citations


The pediatric ocular cancer retinoblastoma is the only central nervous system (CNS) tumor readily observed without specialized equipment: it can be seen by, and in, the naked eye. This accessibility enables unique imaging modalities. Here, we review this cancer for a neuroscience audience, highlighting these clinical and research imaging options, including fundus imaging, optical coherence tomography, ultrasound, and magnetic resonance imaging. We also discuss the subtype of retinoblastoma driven by the MYCN oncogene more commonly associated with neuroblastoma, and consider trilateral retinoblastoma, in which an intracranial tumor arises along with ocular tumors in patients with germline RB1 gene mutations. Retinoblastoma research and clinical care can offer insights applicable to CNS malignancies, and also benefit from approaches developed elsewhere in the CNS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)29-44
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Neuroscience Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2019


  • MYCN
  • cancer genetics
  • neuroimaging
  • optical coherence tomography
  • pediatric cancer
  • pineoblastoma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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