Ian Meek PhD Studentship

Ian Meek PhD Studentship

Official Title: Ian Meek PhD Studentship
Elucidating the high-grade transformation of low-grade brain tumours

Lead Researcher: Dr Heiko Wurdak
Where: Leeds, West Yorkshire
When: 2014-2018
Cost: £120,000
Research Type: Adult, Glioblastoma

Ian Meek died aged 42 from a brain tumour. In the last three years of his life when he was most affected by the disease, he raised £120,000 to fund the Ian Meek PhD Studentship at the University of Leeds.

Dr Heiko Wurdak - CLICK HERE for more information

This research, led by the Dr Heiko Wurdak’s team at the University of Leeds, found that aggressive brain tumour cells taken from patients self-destructed after being exposed to a chemical in laboratory tests. The chemical, named KHS101, was able to cut the energy source of tumour cells from glioblastoma, leading to the death of the cells.

Published in Science Translational Medicine, the research could be the breakthrough charities like Yorkshire's Brain Tumour Charity have been working so hard to achieve – setting a new platform for future research into curing aggressive brain cancers.

Dr Heiko Wurdak said: “When we started this research we thought KHS101 might slow down the growth of glioblastoma, but we were surprised to find that the tumour cells basically self-destructed when exposed to it.

This is the first step in a long process, but our findings pave the way for drug developers to start investigating the uses of this chemical, and we hope that one day it will be helping to extend people’s lives in the clinic.

Yorkshire's Brain Tumour Charity have been incredibly supportive of our research. We are very lucky to have such an excellent charity focusing on the needs of patients with brain cancer in the local environment.”

See the ITV news piece about the discovery HERE.

See the publication in Science Daily HERE.
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