Children's Brain Tumour Research Centre

25 years of research at CBTRC

Ruman (232x278px)

An update from Dr Ruman Rahman, Associate Professor of Molecular Neuro-Oncology at CBTRC

The Children’s Brain Tumour Research Centre (CBTRC) is celebrating its 25th anniversary at a time when we have the most active researchers and research projects in the centre’s lifetime.

There are currently six research groups, who all work closely together, supporting more than 30 students, early career researchers and research technicians. 

CBTRC continues to thrive through generous funding from many donors and through the award of research grants from several UK charities. 

Research Highlights

We are committed to translating research to patient benefit. One example is a project that delivers chemotherapy drugs packaged inside a biodegradable polymer pasted directly onto a malignant tumour called ‘high grade glioma.’ Delivering drugs in this manner resulted in a long-term survival benefit in our initial work. Collaborations with other University staff have led us to investigate the different metabolism of brain cancer versus normal brain. And a project revealing metabolic vulnerabilities of a cancer called ‘ependymoma,’ has just started which may identify new therapy targets.

CBTRC are also supporting research into identifying proteins on the surface of cancer cells, to identify new drug targets for a tumour called ‘diffuse midline glioma.’ This is a particularly devasting childhood cancer, as the tumour is inoperable as surgery would be too risky. Therefore, there is an urgent need for new chemotherapies to be developed. As proteins on the surface of cells are more accessible to drugs, this approach should help identify drugs more likely to be effective.

Other research highlights this year include the CBTRC leading a new clinical trial for children diagnosed with ependymoma; the development of 3-dimensional cell culture models to test drugs against two malignant brain tumours which arise in the cerebellum of the brain – ‘medulloblastoma’ and ‘atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumours’; and the use of ‘liquid biopsies’ to detect tumour fragments in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients diagnosed with ependymoma. 

It's thanks to you, our supporters, this this important research is taking place. Thank you.