New report shows that paediatric brain cancer now more deadly than childhood leukemia in the US

Brain cancer has surpassed leukemia as the deadliest cancer for children and teens in the United States, according to new government data reports the CNN news channel.

The new numbers are a result of major advances in leukemia treatment and lack of progress when it comes to brain cancer, according to the National Center for Health Statistics, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"More than half of all cancer deaths among children and adolescents aged 1-19 years in 1999 and 2014 were attributable to either leukemia or brain cancer," the report stated.

Brain cancer and leukemia accounted for more than half of all cancer deaths for people age 1-19 in 1999 and 2014, the report says.

"A shift occurred during the period, with brain cancer replacing leukemia as the leading type of cancer causing death" continues the report.

The American report did include some good news. It showed a 20% decline in cancer deaths overall among children and teens during the 15-year period.

"This latest news highlights the need for greater investment as well as new approaches to funding and conducting pediatric brain tumor research," the National Brain Tumor Society said after the report.

Our own research has found that whilst survival has improved for children, over 62% are left with a life altering, long-term disability, which has a life-long, profound effect on them and their families. Our research strategy A Cure Can't Wait outlines the fact that treatment for, and understanding of, brain tumours is twenty years behind other cancers.

Find out more about paediatric brain tumours and childhood brain cancer.

You can also read further information about the National Center for Health Statistics data.