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Ependymoma research

Ependymoma is one of the most common high grade brain tumour in children. According to the World Health Organisation, ependymomas can be catagorised as Grade 1, 2 or 3 depending on the individual tumour characteristics. 

In around 40% of cases, the current treatment options offer no cure for patients and the long term survival from this tumour remains poor. 

Current ependymoma research

Here are the research projects we are currently funding that relate to understanding or treating ependymoma

Dr Ruman Rahman

'Shining light' on DNA mutations in childhood brain tumours to reveal new therapy targets

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Dr Ruman Rahman

'Shining light' on DNA mutations in childhood brain tumours to reveal new therapy targets

Dr Rahman will use a powerful gene editing tool to allow his team to control the genetic pathways involved in the fusion of genes

This technique will be applied to ependymoma cells to enable the scientists to understand how specific genes involved with the fusion are activated and whether these genes can be targeted by drugs.

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Other current research projects

Here are the research projects we are currently funding that relate to understanding or treating brain tumours, including ependymoma

Prof. Steve Clifford

INSTINCT:on a mission to beat childhood brain tumours

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Professor Steve Clifford

INSTINCT:on a mission to beat childhood brain tumours

Our INSTINCT programme brings together experts from Newcastle University, the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) and the UCL Institute for Child Health in London to research high-risk childhood brain tumours, including DIPG.

The research programme on DIPG is being led by Dr Chris Jones at the Institute of Cancer Research. Dr Jones has extensive experience in understanding the genetic basis of these tumours and what is driving tumour growth and then developing new drugs that target the genes involved.

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Prof. Colin Kennedy

The PROMOTE Study

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Professor Colin Kennedy

The PROMOTE Study

The project is named The PROMOTE Study - Patient Reported Outcome Measures Online To Enhance Communication and Quality of Life after childhood brain tumour.

The PROMOTE team are developing an online programme called KLIK which will be used by children and their families to keep track of any issues they have between consultations.

This research will propel our ability to understand, and potentially prevent, the harsh side effects of brain tumour treatment in children to help accelerate a change for those affected.

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Prof. Colin Watts

Tessa Jowell BRAIN MATRIX

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Professor Colin Watts

Tessa Jowell BRAIN MATRIX

The Tessa Jowell BRAIN-MATRIX is a first-of-its-kind clinical trial that will enable doctors to treat brain tumours with drugs that are more targeted than ever before. We are excited to be investing £2.8 million to set the trial up, and to drive it into the future.

Although the trial is being led from the UK, we expect it to deliver global impact for brain cancer patients.

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Dr Lee Wong

Investigating tumour initiating events

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Dr Lee Wong

Investigating tumour initiating events

Previous research has demonstrated that chromatin regulation is often disrupted in many cancers. Mutations, or changes, in histone proteins leads to the initiation of many cancers, including gliomas.

The aim of the research, led by Dr Wong, is to understand the role of a specific histone protein, called H3.3, and how changes in this protein drive tumour growth.

Survival rates for individuals diagnosed with gliomas depend on a host of factors, but only 19% of adults diagnosed with a brain tumour survive for five years after their diagnosis. So it’s important that further research is done to inform our understanding of how and why these tumours start.

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