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The Asociación Pulseras Candela will finance €150,000 a VHIR research project in a type of pediatric tumor of the central nervous system



Pediatric ependymoma is a highly aggressive tumor of the central nervous system that remains incurable in approximately 40% of cases.

The Asociación Pulseras Candela has signed a collaboration agreement with the Vall d'Hebron Research Institute (VHIR) to help finance euros 150,000 a research project on pediatric ependymoma, a tumor of the central nervous system. Specifically, the project "New therapeutic approaches for the treatment of pediatric ependymoma", from which different lines of research derive, and whose main researcher is Dr. Miquel Segura, of the Translational Research Group on Cancer in Children and Adolescents of the VHIR.Pediatric ependymoma (EPN) is a highly aggressive tumor of the central nervous system that remains incurable in approximately 40% of cases. The current treatment of these tumors combines surgery and treatments such as radiotherapy and chemotherapy. But this treatment is often limited by the location of the tumor and the risk of damaging vital brain structures. Hence the need to develop new therapeutic strategies for pediatric EPNs.Pulseras Candela were born in mid-2013 when Candela, a girl with leukemia who spent long hours in, learned to bracelet thanks to a volunteer. His friends also began to wear bracelets and sell them at a village stand and the initiative grew so much that today, many groups and organizations collaborate in the manufacture and/or distribution of Candela bracelets: schools, old people's homes, neighborhood associations, shops, sports clubs ...Through this agreement with the VHIR, the Association Pulseras Candela commits to donate euros150,000 distributed in three years to finance the research of pediatric ependymoma. "Thanks to your support we can consolidate research lines such as those we devote to this tumor, and also gives us a push to request more ambitious projects," explained Dr. Miquel Segura. For its part, Dr. Soledad Gallego, head of the Translational Research Group on Cancer in Children and Adolescents, thanked the members of the association and the Candela for the great effort they have made and what they are doing to support research and help other families with children suffering from cancer. For the Association Pulseras Candela, it has been very important to sign this agreement, as it "represents opening up to a new center and beginning to work together with a new team. And we have done so for the excellence of the research done at the VHIR and because we firmly believe that far from competing between centers, what we have to do is support and share knowledge" said Mireia Porres, vice president of the Association and mother of Candela.The challenges of the project New therapeutic approaches for the treatment of pediatric ependymoma1. Increase the number and characterization of cellular and animal models. To increase the portfolio of possible treatments, you need to be able to test first in both cellular and animal models. Nowadays, the availability of these models in ependymoma is very scarce and for that we work in two ways: collaborating with other national and international groups to share cell lines, and creating our own models based on samples from patients treated at Vall d'Hebron University Hospital.2. Proof of epigenetic drugs with high selectivity for the brain. One of the biggest problems faced by oncologists is the reduced number of drugs that are able to reach the tumors that are located in the brain, due to the low permeability of this organ for drugs. Epigenetic drugs are a new type of drugs that are having promising results in a large number of adult tumors.3. Understand how some brain cells help the growth and progression of ependymoma. In recent years it has been shown that for a tumor cell to grow in a certain environment, it needs the contribution of the neighboring cells. In the laboratory we have compared what genes are regulated in ependymoma cells when they grow in the brain compared to when they grow in other tissues or in the culture plaque. Preliminary results indicate that there is a large number of genes that are activated only when these cells are in the environment where the tumor is commonly grown. This information will allow us to know more about the processes or genes that are strictly necessary for this adaptation and therefore will be ideal candidates for the development of new drugs.

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