BCBA is proud to welcome three neurosurgeons to our 240km Bike Ride for Brain Cancer next month. Our BCBA Chair, Professor Michael Besser, will be joined by his former senior registrar and current neurosurgical director of Gammaknife Surgery at Macquarie, Dr John Fuller and Professor Marcus Stoodley who is head of neurosurgery at Macquarie University Hospital. The three neurosurgeons are no strangers to a physical challenge; Stoodley is a keen cyclist, Besser is a veteran masters ironman and triathlete, and this year Fuller has qualified for entry into the L'Etape Championship in France held on one of the Tour de France stages.
We're thrilled to have the support of busy clinicians, raising money for BCBA! Support their efforts, make a donation:
Professor Michael Besser
Dr John Fuller
Professor Marcus Stoodley
Isabella and Marcus, who lost their young lives to brain cancer, are the namesakes of the Foundation that has been a generous supporter of BCBA and its operations. This is the third year we have received a valuable $25,000 funding grant and we are very grateful to the Directors for their continued support. The Isabella and Marcus Foundation works with researchers in Australia to develop treatments for children with brain cancer.
Read more about the Isabella and Marcus Foundation.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at BCBA.
Thank you to all our supporters - we’ve enjoyed some fantastic successes in 2018 and look forward to sharing another productive year in 2019.
We’d love to see you in the Hunter Valley at the Bike Ride for Brain Cancer in March - as a rider, or at our finish line winery long luncheon at Calais Estate.
The Telethon Kids Institute - and home to the Brain Tumour Research Biobank Program - has recently relocated to a new state of the art research facility within the Perth Children’s Hospital. The exciting move presented no shortage of challenges, including physically transporting precious biobank specimens in specialist trucks five kilometres across town.
We asked the Brain Tumour Research team about the process and how they are enjoying their new home.
BCBA network member biobank, Queensland Children’s Tumour Bank (QCTB), contributed to a landmark paper recently published in Nature Medicine showing that paediatric glioblastoma (pGBM) and diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG) are made of different cancerous cells that work together to invade the brain. This research offers clues on how to treat these aggressive childhood brain cancers, and highlights the importance of coordinated post-mortem brain tumour donations,
“This novel research led by our collaborator, Professor Chris Jones at the Institute of Cancer Research in London, sheds new light on how small numbers of cells within these tumours play an important role in the behaviour of the overall tumour.” said Andrew Moore, QCTB Director and BCBA Steering Group member (pictured).
“Breakthrough research like this is only possible by researchers having access to significant numbers of patient samples. When samples are rare, researchers often need to pool samples from biobanks around the world. This has certainly been the case for inoperable and incurable brain cancers such as DIPG. The Queensland Children’s Tumour Bank has been a key collaborator of Professor Jones’ for a number of years and contributed important samples for this study.”
Read the abstract
We are excited to announce the launch of a dynamic one-stop shop for researchers to search and apply for clinical samples across the entire BCBA network. The new online system will simplify the search for clinical samples and allow researchers to submit one application electronically to all member biobanks.
The interactive register captures all brain cancer biospecimens available across the national BCBA network and has the capacity for individual biobank members to regularly access the database and update their biospecimen collection information. The new system is a significant step forward in BCBA’s efforts to assist researchers to advance treatments and outcomes for brain cancer patients.
The South Australian Neurological Tumour Bank is set to triple its tumour collection rate through a new partnership with the Royal Adelaide Hospital. The tumour bank will soon receive neurological tumour tissue from the hospital, adding to the Flinders Medical Centre collection.
“We currently have approximately 180 brain and spinal cord tumour specimens” explains tumour bank coordinator Dr Rebecca Ormsby, “but this new link provides us a fantastic opportunities to expand the available resources for researchers”.
The tumour bank has also received a grant from the Neurosurgical Research Foundation to set up a comprehensive specimen and clinical information database for the tumour and blood specimens collected.
For more information contact Dr Rebecca Ormsby: SANTB@flinders.edu.au
Biobanking has been recognised as an area of focus as part of the Federal Government $1.9 billion expenditure to support Australia’s national research infrastructure over the next 12 years. Funding has been earmarked for a scoping study to determine the investments needed to maximise the broad range of biobanking activities across Australia. BCBA submitted to the development of the 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap and hopes to be involved during the course of the biobanking scoping study.
Read the Government Response to the 2016 National Research Infrastructure Roadmap Research Infrastructure Investment Plan here.
The rare nature of brain cancer subtypes means that it can take many years to accumulate sufficient specimens for meaningful research. This month we highlight the contribution of the brain tumour bank at the Kolling Institute in Sydney. Established in 2003, the collection is now the largest in the BCBA Network and having recently completed a specimen audit it is probably also the most up to date. Under the direction of A/Prof Viive Howell, tissues collected and archived from donors at the Royal North Shore and North Shore Private Hospitals for over 15 years are making an invaluable contribution to both local and international research into many brain cancer subtypes.
For information on recent landmark studies and further information on the Kolling Institute Brain Tumour Bank click here
The first meeting of the Australian Brain Cancer Mission Strategic Advisory Group was hosted by the Federal Government agency, Cancer Australia, in Sydney on 3rd/4th April 2018. BCBA consortium members Anna Nowak, Lindy Jeffree, Mark Rosenthal and Robyn Leonard are members of the Strategic Advisory Group. The Group was established to provide strategic advice and guidance to support the $100 million Australian Brain Cancer Mission in achieving its objective of doubling the survival rates and improving the quality of life of patients with brain cancer over the next 10 years.
For more information on The Mission click here
$175,000 and counting - what an incredible fundraising result! To our sponsors, riders, donors and everyone involved in making this event such a resounding success, BCBA says thank you. These funds will assist us in our continuing effort to facilitate researcher access to the tissue and data that is vital to advancing brain cancer research and ultimately defeating this deadly disease. Let’s do it again! Register your interest for our next ride in 2019!
As we head into the final, very busy weeks before the launch of our Bike Ride for Brain Cancer, BCBA would like to acknowledge the support of SBS Cycling Central in promoting the event. Currently posted on their website are two videos highlighting BCBA and the ride. The first features cyclist and brain cancer survivor, Ross Bowles and the second backgrounds BCBA - the cause behind the ride.
Perth based Resource Capital Funds CEO and BCBA Bike Ride sponsor, James McClements and his wife Meredith are clocking up regular 100km training rides in preparation for their trip to Sydney to join fellow cyclists on our 2 day/250km cycling challenge. We thank them and our other sponsors, Champion Iron, EHR and Riversdale Resources for their amazing support and recognition of the importance of research infrastructure such as BCBA in advancing brain cancer research.
If you would like to join us on the road or just learn more please visit our fundraising website.
Saturday 9 March 2019
We are inviting all BCBA supporters to join us for a relaxed long luncheon at the award winning Calais Estate winery, home to one of the largest collections of boutique wines in the Hunter Valley to mark the end of our 2019 Bike Ride for Brain Cancer and celebrate what would have been Lucie Leonard's 41st birthday weekend.
Join us for an unforgettable 3 course lunch, accompanied by Estate wines, speeches, awards and music. If you are bringing the kids you can relax while they’re entertained by a dedicated kids party team, all included in the ticket price.
Buy tickets now!
8 & 9 March 2019
Registrations for the ride are now closed, but please come and join in the celebrations at the Finishing Line Long Luncheon at Calais Estate Winery.
For more information and to buy your tickets click here
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