Ependymoma is a common pediatric brain tumor and current treatments are limited to surgery and radiation even in very young children. Both supratentorial and posterior fossa ependymoma are relatively chemotherapy resistant and as such, new treatment options are greatly needed. In order to identify new targets for therapy, researchers have previously identified several signaling pathways, including the Ras/MAPK pathway, which are specific to ependymoma. Given these results, researchers hypothesize that targeting these pathways is a rational treatment approach for childhood ependymoma. This project aims to perform chemical and genetic screening of therapeutic vulnerabilities in childhood ependymoma models followed by experiments to validate any identified therapeutic options. The limited availability of high quality ependymoma models has held back the progress of this work, but samples provided by the Children’s Brain Tumor Network will fill this gap.
What are the goals of this project?
Researchers aim to perform chemical and genetic screening of therapeutic vulnerabilities in childhood ependymoma.
What is the impact of this project?
The identification of therapeutic vulnerabilities is the first step in the development of new therapies to treat ependymoma.
Why is the CBTN request important to this project?
We are requesting models of childhood ependymoma (both supratentorial and posterior fossa) which propagate in vitro, which are amenable to both chemical and genetic screening. As there is a paucity of ependymoma models that propagate in vitro, these will be extremely valuable to identify potential therapeutic targets which can be developed further.
Progress in this field has been held back by the lack of high quality samples, making the Children’s Brain Tumor Networks contribution particularly important.
The Children's Brain Tumor Network will contribute to this project by providing cell lines.
Vijay Ramaswamy, MD, PhD, FRCPC
My overall research focus is the translational genomics of medulloblastoma and ependymoma with a focus on recurrent disease. My previous and ongoing work has been primarily to apply clinical correlates to recent genomic findings, with an overarching goal of identifying new and more robust risk strat
Ependymomas arise from ependymal cells that line the ventricles and passageways in the brain and the center of the spinal cord. Ependymal cells produce cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). These tumors are classified as supratentorial or infratentorial. In children, most ependymomas are infratentorial tumors