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26 May, 2020 - 15:49 By Tony Quested

Europe honours Cambridge brain cancer pioneer

A clinician scientist at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge has won an international award for bleeding-edge laboratory work that could help patients in their battle against cancer.

Dr Imran Noorani has won the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies’ Best Laboratory Paper 2020 Prize following research into a specific kind of brain tumour. 

Survival rate for patients with glioblastoma has only minimally changed in the last few decades, so better understanding of tumour biology and newer treatments are important. 

Dr Noorani, a neurosurgery academic clinical follow, recently completed his PhD conducting this research. Through a series of experiments, and protracted genetic sequencing, he and his colleagues were able to identify potential new targets to treat within the cancer, known in medical circles as ‘novel glioma drivers’.

His paper is expected to be published shortly and he will travel to a prestigious ceremony in Belgrade in October where his prize, which is specifically aimed at young neuroscientists, will be presented subject to COVID-19 travelling restrictions.

Dr Noorani said: “I am delighted with the award, and the potential this research may have on the treatment of cancer patients going forwards. I am continuing work in this field, looking to see how some of the new genes discovered in brain tumours may be targetable by drugs.” 

Consultant neurosurgeon and Dr Noorani’s PhD co-supervisor, Thomas Santarius, said: “We are very proud of Imran’s achievement and the dedication he has shown in completing this very important piece of work. 

“Research like this keeps Cambridge at the forefront of cancer treatment and highlights the importance of clinicians in neurosurgery making significant contributions.”

• Anyone interested in learning more about the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies can visit

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