Childhood Brain Tumor Foundation: Grants for Brain Research and Treatment

OVERVIEW: This funder awards grants annually to researchers for basic science and clinical research for pediatric brain tumors, as well as related programs and conferences. Funding goes toward treatments, cures, and quality-of-life enhancements.

IP TAKE: Typically only a couple of these grants are awarded per year. Pick up the foundation’s fall newsletter editions to read summaries of grants and get a sense of what the scientific advisors tend to favor.

PROFILE: Based in Germantown, Maryland, the Childhood Brian Tumor Foundation is a volunteer-led organization founded by physicians, families, and friends of children who suffer from brain tumors. CBTF awards grants for scientific pediatric research to increase public awareness about the disease and improve the quality of life and treatments for children who are affected by brain tumors.

It was first incorporated in Virginia in 1994, but dissolved and became incorporated in Maryland in 1998. CBTF funds basic science and clinical research for pediatric brain tumors, as well as related programs and conferences. Grants are made annually. Support goes toward finding cures for tumors, making children with tumors more comfortable, and addressing the needs of the children’s families.

As a funder in this field for over 20 years, CBTF accepts grant applications during a specific period, and a scientific advisor panel reviews them. This research process is guided by the National Institutes of Health review standards and led by Dr. Roger J. Packer, who is the founding advisor and chairman of the advisory. The advisors review, score and summarize applications and hold teleconference calls to discuss applications and make recommendations. The organization receives its funds for distribution through both public and private donations.

You can download a list of recent grants on the Opportunities for Researchers page of the foundation website. Past grants have gone to institutions including Baylor College of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, the National Cancer Institute, University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine, and the International Symposium on Pediatric Neuro-Oncology. Grant information is announced on the foundation’s website, as well. Most funding goes to researchers in the U.S., but some support extends to international projects and conferences, too. Most studies are funded for up to two years.

General questions can be directed to the staff at 301-515-2900 or There are four board members and five directors at CBTF, as well as scientific, legal, and survivorship advisors. In addition to its prominent Maryland presence, community representatives are based all over the country in Louisiana, Texas, Florida, New Jersey, Connecticut, Illinois, Utah, Indiana, and California.


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