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Childhood Cancer

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Vital research into childhood cancers

World Cancer Day, 4 February

There are around 1,900 new children's cancer cases in the UK every year, that's around 5 every day.

A cancer diagnosis is upsetting at any age, especially when the patient is a child.

And sadly there are many different types of cancer that affect children but the major types in children ages 0-14 years are leukaemia, brain and other central nervous system (CNS), and intracranial tumours. 

These childhood cancers are not the same as adult cancers - the type of cancer, how advanced it is and how best to treat it differ between children and adults – so it’s important that we invest in research to help children with cancer.  

There are also many types of cancer treatment - common treatments include: surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, immunotherapy, and stem cell transplant.

The types of treatment that a child with cancer receives will depend on the type of cancer and how advanced it is, but often these treatments can have serious side effects.

That’s why research is vital for identifying which children need intensive treatment to help improve their chances of making a good recovery, whilst sparing children who need less aggressive treatment from invasive treatments that can have life-changing side effects. 

Brain tumours

Every year in the UK around 400 children are diagnosed with a brain tumour.

Joey, pictured, is lucky as one in four children with brain cancer lose their lives within five years. It is a horribly high statistic and one that with research we’re hoping to change.

We're funding research looking to identify how aggressive each child’s cancer is likely to be, much sooner and with greater accuracy, so treatments can be tailored to his or her individual needs.

Childhood leukaemia

The most common cancer affecting children and young people, it affects around 500 families in the UK each year.

Leukaemia is a type of blood cancer which affects the infection-fighting white blood cells of the immune system. Children with leukaemia have large numbers of abnormal white blood cells which take over the bone marrow, where they are made, and flow out into the bloodstream.

Action is funding research to help better treatment.


Around 100 children are diagnosed with a type of cancer called neuroblastoma each year in the UK.

Most children with neuroblastoma are young – less than five years old. While some receive a positive prognosis, sadly, around a third of children lose their lives within five years of being diagnosed. We're currently funding two research projects to help change these shocking statistics.

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