Colleagues from the University of Westminster’s School of Life Sciences have raised over £600 for Brain Tumour Research through the event Wear a Hat Day. 


Dr Miriam Dwek, Reader on the Medical Sciences BSc Honours course and Course Leader of the Biomedical Sciences (Cancer Biology) MSc, helped to organise the event with Dr Nadège Presneau, Senior Lecturer on the Biomedical Sciences BSc and the Biomedical Sciences MSc courses. Their fundraising dedicated to the cause has reached over £600.

In February 2019, Dr Presneau was diagnosed with a very rare type of brain tumour called haemangiopericytoma/solitary fibrous tumour (HPC-SFT). HPC-SFTs are categorised as a type of mesenchymal tumour that can appear anywhere throughout the body in soft tissue and bone. Dr Presneau underwent surgery to remove the tumour in March 2019 and following her craniotomy, she received radiotherapy in order to try to reduce the risk of recurrence and spread. By December 2019, she was able to return to the University full-time. 

Wear A Hat Day is one of the UK’s biggest and most important brain tumour research fundraising and awareness-raising days. In 2019, the event raised over £330,000 for Brain Tumour Research to support their sustainable and long-term research into brain tumours at their dedicated UK Research Centres. 

Brain Tumour Research is a charity working to build a network of next-generation world-class experts in neuro-oncology. Their work involves understanding the origins of brain tumours in order to create personalised treatments, starving cancer cells of the energy they need to grow and expand, repurposing existing drugs in order to increase options for targeting brain tumours and identifying mutations in low-grade brain tumours that dangerously accelerate tumour growth. 

Dr Dwek said: “My research laboratory has benefited from a lot of charitable funding and charities are absolutely essential as they fund so much ground-breaking research.  When my colleague and friend Nadège developed a brain tumour last year, I wanted to do something to help, to channel my energy into something positive. I have also signed up for a 10K run to raise further funds for this really important cause. We can credit vastly improved survival times for breast and other cancers on the scientific research effort. We now want to see more funding into brain cancers so that our friends, families and colleagues can benefit from what science can offer too.”

Dr Presneau added: “I am touched beyond words by the love and support my friends and colleagues have expressed by participating in this fundraising event for a cause that is now close to me.”

Donate to the cause on the Just Giving page.

Read Dr Presneau’s story on the Brain Tumour Research website.

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