Brain tumour patient meets with scientists researching a cure
A Gateshead brain tumour patient and his family travelled to London to meet with researchers working to find a cure for the disease.
Adam Bradford was diagnosed with an anaplastic oligodendroglioma tumour in May 2016. In October 2017, after overcoming surgery and treatment, the 24-year-old raised more than £7,000 for the Brain Tumour Research charity with his dad, David. The pair cycled 300 miles from America’s Grand Canyon to Las Vegas in scorching temperatures all in aid of supporting research into the disease.
On Thursday 6 December, just four days before Adam was due to undergo a second operation, the father and son were at the charity’s Research Centre of Excellence at Imperial College to see the work scientists are doing to improve treatment options and, ultimately, find a cure.
Adam said: “The charity cycle was an extremely tough challenge but visiting researchers at Imperial College, and learning how vital these funds are, makes it all worth it. It shocks me that brain tumours kill more children and adults than any other cancer yet, historically, only 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.”
Joined by Adam’s fiancé Michelle and her daughter Ruby, David’s wife Vickie and his stepson Oli, the father and son duo were given a tour of the research facility at Hammersmith Hospital and heard from lead scientist Dr Nelofer Syed about the work taking place there. They met Kevin O’Neill, a leading neuro-surgeon at Charing Cross Hospital who told them about how the research work was being translated into new surgical tools, such as the iKnife, which can differentiate between tumour and normal brain cells during surgery. Adam and David also placed two tiles on the Wall of Hope where each tile represents the £2,740 it costs to fund a day of research.
David, who lives in Whitley Bay, added: “With Adam’s next operation coming up soon, placing our tiles on the Wall of Hope was an especially moving moment. I’m so proud of him for completing the cycling challenge and so proud of how brave he has been since his diagnosis.
“I hope more funding is allocated to research into brain tumours so that scientists, such as the amazing ones at Imperial, can continue the vital work that’s taking place.”
Matthew Price, community fundraising manager for Brain Tumour Research, said: “We are extremely grateful to Adam, David and family for their support, and for helping us to fund the vital research taking place at our Centres of Excellence. We will be thinking of them as Adam undergoes further surgery.
“Brain tumours kill more children and adults than any other cancer yet, historically, only 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease. We cannot all this situation to continue.”
Brain Tumour Research funds sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence in the UK; it also campaigns for the Government and the larger cancer charities to invest more in research into brain tumours in order to speed up new treatments for patients and, ultimately, to find a cure. The charity is calling for an annual spend of £35m in order to improve survival rates and patient outcomes in line with other cancers such as breast cancer and leukaemia.
For further information, please contact:
Farel James at Brain Tumour Research on 01908 867221 or 07592 502708 or Farel.James@braintumourresearch.org
Notes to Editors
Brain Tumour Research is the only national charity in the UK dedicated to raising funds for continuous and sustainable scientific research into brain tumours, and we are a leading voice calling for greater support and action for research into what scientists are calling the last battleground against cancer.
We are building a network of experts in sustainable research at dedicated Centres of Excellence whilst influencing the Government and larger cancer charities to invest more nationally.
We welcome recent funding announcements for research into brain tumours from the UK Government and Cancer Research UK – £65 million pledged over the next five years. However, this potential funding of £13 million a year comes with a catch – money will only be granted to quality research proposals and, due to the historic lack of investment, there may not be enough of these applications that qualify for grants from this pot.
We want research funding parity with breast cancer and leukaemia. We are calling for a £30-35 million investment every year for research into brain tumours in order to fund the ground-breaking research needed to accelerate the translation from laboratory discoveries into clinical trials and fast-track new therapies for this devastating disease.
The Brain Tumour Research charity is a powerful campaigning organisation and represents the voice of the brain tumour community across the UK. We helped establish and provide the ongoing Secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group for Brain Tumours (APPGBT) which published its report Brain Tumours A cost too much to bear? in 2018. Led by the charity, the report examines the economic and social impacts of a brain tumour diagnosis. We are also a key player in the development strategy for the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission.
Key statistics on brain tumours:
- Brain tumours are indiscriminate; they can affect anyone at any age
- Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer
- Historically, just 1% of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to brain tumours
- In the UK, 16,000 people each year are diagnosed with a brain tumour
- Brain tumours kill more children than leukaemia
- Brain tumours kill more men under 45 than prostate cancer
- Brain tumours kill more women under 35 than breast cancer
- Less than 20% of those diagnosed with a brain tumour survive beyond five years compared with an average of 50% across all cancers
Please quote Brain Tumour Research as the source when using this information. Additional facts and statistics are available from our website. We can also provide case studies and research expertise for the media.