November Update: Smash Childhood Cancer

The researchers are successfully continuing their lab testing, validating more compounds.


The Smash Childhood Cancer research team has identified proteins and other molecules that play key roles in certain childhood cancers. The challenge is now to find chemical drug candidates that specifically target these key molecules and therefore control the cancer cells.


The researchers won a grant and received 500,000$ from a donor to study intracranial tumours. Moreover, Dr. Gell won a Young Investigator award.

Data analysis updates

Since early this year, the researchers have been analyzing data from work run on World Community Grid.

Below are the key proteins for which we have new updates this month. Each of these proteins is involved in the development of at least one type of childhood cancer.

Beta catenin
One promising compound has been shown to bind K-Ras as well, so the researchers are trying to understand the link between the two proteins. Other similar compounds are being synthetized and tested.

One compound is being tested and it shows dose dependent binding (a very promising preliminary validation).

Since the last monthly update, a donor provided $250,000 for the validation, so the researchers aim to validate 5 compounds.

Note: Due to the pandemic, there is a worldwide shortage of reagents that impede the regular pace of experiments.

Current status of work units


Click here to learn more about World Community Grid's monthly project updates.