Grey May Brain Tumour Awareness Month

Brain Tumour Awareness Month

Grey May Brain Tumour Awareness Month image

NRF funds ground-breaking brain cancer research at all three SA universities

The NeuroSurgical Research Foundation (NRF) funds leading research into Brain Cancer at the University of South Australia, University of Adelaide and Flinders University.

Prof Stuart Pitson, NRF Chair of Brain Tumour Research and Head of the Molecular Signalling Laboratory at the University of South Australia/SA Pathology - Centre for Cancer Biology.

“As NRF Chair of Brain Tumour Research, I can say that the brain tumour research we are currently funding thanks to generous donations from our supporters is life-changing and gives real hope to those suffering from this insidious disease.

“Unfortunately, much of the death and disability of tumours is attributable to their ability to spread and invade the brain leading to devastating consequences such as brain swelling. In fact, brain cancer kills more adults under 40 than any other cancer, kills more children than any other disease, and takes one life about every seven hours in Australia,” Prof Pitson said.

The aims of current NRF Brain Tumour Research include:

  • Decrease brain swelling to improve quality of life
  • Reduce invasiveness to enhance surgical treatments
  • Impede tumour growth to prolong survival.

Current NRF funded brain tumour research projects are listed below:

  • Inflaming the Brain: Chemotherapy effects on Cognitive Function in Child Cancer Survivors – Dr Alexandra Whittaker, University of Adelaide
  • Developing a comprehensive glioblastoma brain tumour resource for testing new and existing brain tumour therapies – Dr Melinda Tea, University of South Australia
  • Arming a patient’s immune system to treat aggressive brain cancer – Dr Lisa Ebert, University of South Australia
  • A new approach to deliver drugs to brain tumours – Dr Briony Gliddon, University of South Australia
  • Region-specific brain organoids for rapid and personalised pre-clinical test of treatments for glioblastoma – Dr Guillermo A. Gomez, University of South Australia
  • Investigating the role of 14-3-3ζ in medulloblastoma, childhood brain cancer - Dr Quenten Schwartz, PhD, University of South Australia
  • The establishment of a comprehensive database management system for the South Australian Neurological Tumour Bank – Dr Rebecca Ormsby, Flinders University

Find out more about current NRF Brain Tumour research here:

What is Brain Cancer?

Brain cancers include primary brain tumours, which start in the brain and almost never spread to other parts of the body, and secondary tumours (or metastases), which are caused by cancers that began in another part of the body.

There are more than 40 major types of brain tumours, which are grouped into two main types:

  • Benign - slow-growing and unlikely to spread. Common types are meningiomas, neuromas, pituitary tumours and craniopharyngiomas.
  • Malignant - cancerous and able to spread into other parts of the brain or spinal cord. Common types include astrocytomas, oligodendrogliomas, glioblastomas and mixed gliomas.

In 2015, 1,787 brain cancers were diagnosed in Australia. The risk of being diagnosed with a brain cancer by age 85 is 1 in 103 for men and 1 in 161 for women.

In 2016, there were 1,439 deaths in Australia caused by brain cancer.

The five-year survival rate for brain cancer is 22%.

Click here to donate to Brain Tumour Research.

Event details
Date and time
Sunday 31 May 2020

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