2018 CERN Robert Connor Dawes Scientific Fellowship Summary Report

2018 CERN Robert Connor Dawes Scientific Fellowship Summary Report By Dr. Claire King at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute.

Claire King, Ph.D., research associate at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute at the University of Cambridge, began her research project to investigate the genetic fusion that drives the most aggressive subtype of supratentorial ependymoma, a rare type of pediatric brain tumour that occurs in the forebrain. Dr. King’s research is under the leadership of neuro-oncologist Richard Gilbertson, M.D.

Dr Claire King


Approximately 70% of these tumours express a novel oncogene which is the result of a fusion between the two proteins, C11orf95 and RELA, called CR-Fus for short and is associated with poor prognosis. The researchers have developed complex mouse models to determine the role of C11orf95 gene in normal development, and the role of CR-Fus in the initiation and progression of the tumors. Once the role of the CR-Fus in ependymoma development is fully understood, scientists will start developing new treatments for supratentorial ependymoma attacking this fusion as a novel therapeutic target. This research effort could be fundamental in developing future translational work.

The ependymoma research project was funded by the CERN Foundation, a program of the National Brain Tumor Society in partnership with the Robert Connor Dawes Foundation through a distinguished and competitive award called the 2018 CERN Robert Connor Dawes Scientific Fellowship.

As a result from the work performed through the support of this grant,  CERN were able to secure funding for a further five years of study on the CR-FUS in ependymoma.

You can read more about Dr. Claire King and her research on the CERN website here