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Diffuse midline glioma research

Diffuse midline glioma (previously called DIPG) is a type of brain tumour that forms in a part of the brainstem known as the pons. They affect between 20 to 30 children in the UK every year and there is no effective treatment.

Diffuse midline glioma tumours are incredibly difficult to treat as they can’t be be operated on due to their location within the brainstem, a crucial part of the brain that controls vital functions such as breathing. 

Our researchers are determined to understand more about this condition and develop new and effective methods to treat it.

Current diffuse midline glioma research projects

Here are the research projects we are currently funding that relate to understanding or treating diffuse midline glioma.


Current high grade, child brain tumour research projects

Here are some other research projects we are currently funding that relate to understanding or treating high grade child brain tumours including diffuse midline glioma (formerly known as DIPG)


Past projects


Working on links with other diseases

Dr Chris Jones and his team at the ICR have previously found a common genetic fault in the DNA of some children with DIPG and the DNA of people with fibrodysplasia ossificans progressive (FOP). 

Sometimes called Stone Man Syndrome, FOP causes damaged muscle to turn to bone, so that patients experience increasing immobility and pain as they are gradually ‘locked in’ to a growing skeleton. 

Scientists have already discovered that FOP is caused by a fault in the gene ACVR1, which is also found in some diffuse midline glioma patients. Some of the drugs being developed to treat FOP have also shown to be effective in killing tumour cells containing the ACVR1 fault.