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New drug development for medulloblastoma

Fast facts

  • Official title: Identification, in-vivo modelling and therapeutic targeting of superenhancer-driven oncogenes in Group 3 medulloblastoma
  • Lead researcher: Professor Louis Chesler
  • Where: The Institute of Cancer Research, London
  • When: April 2017- March 2022
  • Cost: £1,455,452 over a five-year period
  • Research type: Paediatric, Medulloblastoma (High Grade), Academic

Medulloblastoma is the most common malignant brain tumour in children and causes 10% of cancer deaths. Large studies of tumour-tissue have identified four subgroups of medulloblastoma in patients, but only children with the two least aggressive subgroups have new treatment options. For those children with aggressive, “Group 3" tumours, survival is dismal and treatment is devastating.

This is what excites me about this grant, it's connected us with two of the best labs in the world, one in America and one in Germany.

Professor Louis Chesler

Professor Chesler is working with a team from Germany and the USA to study Group 3 medulloblastoma. The team will be analysing the genome in medulloblastoma tumour cells while also working on new ways to test drugs for this tumour type.

If successful, the research could, for the first time, reveal how these tumours are wired. This could mean that new drugs to treat this tumour type are delivered to the clinic within five years.

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Research is the only way we will discover kinder, more effective treatments and, ultimately, stamp out brain tumours – for good! However, brain tumours are complex and research in to them takes a great deal of time and money.

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Professor Chesler explains how his team will be analysing the genome in medulloblastoma tumour cells while also working on new ways to test drugs for this tumour type.