Newsletter Signup x

Brain Tumour & Cancer Awareness

Brain tumours are one of the most common cancers to affect children and young people.

They cause more deaths in this age group than any other cancer and many survivors are left with life-altering, long-term disabilities.

Brain Tumour Awareness Month

In March we took part in Brain Tumour Awareness Month to highlight the importance of increasing funding for childhood brain tumour research. We shared content on our website and social media showing the difference our research is making and also highlighting why it’s so important to fund more research into childhood brain tumours. TV presenter, Nadia Sawalha supported our Bake Club to raise awareness and funds.

The importance of research into brain tumours

Improving treatments for brain tumours in children

Some brain tumours are curable, using aggressive treatments including surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy. Other brain tumours, however, remain incurable, with no effective treatment. Some children may survive only a few months from diagnosis.

For those who survive long-term, survival may come at high cost. The aggressive treatments can harm developing brains, causing physical and mental disabilities and a range of health problems.

We urgently need to fund more research to improve our understanding of childhood brain tumours, find more effective, less damaging treatments and save more young lives.

Children with Cancer UK Brain Tumour Initiative

Research into brain tumours, in general, and childhood brain tumours, in particular, has not been well-funded in the past despite the very high burden imposed by these tumours.

To address this, in 2014 we launched a new initiative to drive progress in childhood brain tumour research, committing funds of at least £3 million over three years for new brain tumour research.

Our researchers work together to share samples, data and expertise, both nationally and internationally.

The first tranche of funding was awarded in March 2015 for four exciting new project grants worth £1.8m in total.

With this funding, four groups of researchers are taking forward vital research into four different types of childhood brain tumour: ependymoma, medulloblastoma, craniopharyngioma and high grade glioma.

An important feature of the four new projects is that they are all strongly collaborative, with researchers working together to share samples, data and expertise, both nationally and internationally.

In 2016, we focussed on the very specific issue of drug delivery in childhood brain tumours. One of the major challenges in treating brain tumours is getting drugs through the ‘blood-brain barrier’ to reach the tumour. We hosted a highly successful workshop on this topic in February 2016, bringing together scientists and clinicians from around the world to share experiences and forge new research collaborations.

Our Brain tumour workshop

In December 2016 the second phase of funding was agreed and an additional four projects were awarded at a total cost of £1.24m. We invited research applications which sought to enhance the effectiveness of therapy through improved drug delivery systems or the use of novel technologies. The four projects use distinctly different approaches to deliver treatments of brain tumour patients.

This has brought our total expenditure of the Brain Tumour Initiative to over £3m as planned in 2014.

Meet some of our hero patient stories

Research we're funding - Professor Chris Jones

A new treatment approach for children with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma

Diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) is a childhood brain tumour that currently kills over 90 per cent of ...

Read more
Find out more about our brain tumour initiative

Research Stories - Paediatric brain tumour initiative

In 2014, in response to the apparent dearth of funding going into paediatric brain tumour research, we ring-fenced ...

Read more
Join our bake club today and help save young lives!

Bake Club

Bake Club is a fun and easy way to raise money for Children with Cancer UK in your ...

Read more