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National brain tumour research funding needs to increase to £35 million a year

New Centre of Excellence brings hope of cure for deadly childhood tumours

Brain Tumour Research has announced a £2.5 million funding agreement to help find a cure for the deadliest of all childhood cancers.

The fourth Brain Tumour Research Centre of Excellence will be at The Institute of Cancer Research, Sutton, Surrey, where the team led by Professor Chris Jones has ambitious plans to identify new treatments for high-grade glioma brain tumours – which include those previously known as brainstem glioma and diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) – occurring in children and young adults.

Dr Karen Noble, our Director of Research, Policy and Innovation, said: “The aim is that this work will lead to trials within the next five years so we can give real hope to families in the future. The current situation means that people, already facing the most distressing circumstances, often have no option but to search for and fund trials abroad with all the expense, upheaval and uncertainly that brings.

“It is crucial that attention is focused on this most deadly of childhood cancers. We are grateful to our loyal supporters whose commitment and hard work has made this milestone possible. But we need the Government to step up and not rely so much on investment from charities.”

Under Prof Jones’s leadership, an experienced team will lead the way in scientific research into paediatric-type diffuse high-grade glioma (PDHGG) brain tumours. PDHGG are a collection of high-grade glioma tumours which include DIPG and paediatric glioblastoma (GBM). The median survival for the vast majority of these tumours is just nine to 18 months.

Dr Noble added: “The Centre will act as an international hub for the development of new treatments for children and young adults with these terrible brain tumours. Improving outcomes for children with these types of tumour is crucial if we are to make progress and bring much-needed hope to so many.”

Prof Jones, pictured with his team, said: “We are delighted that Brain Tumour Research is backing our research into finding better treatments for children with brain cancer. These tumours are incredibly resistant to current treatments and children are in desperate need of new options.

“Our lab is working day in, day out to unravel the underlying biology of these dreadful tumours, and hopefully uncover new ways to attack them. This invaluable support from Brain Tumour Research will help to fuel new discoveries and pave the way to smarter, kinder treatments for children.”

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