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Brain Cancer Research Study – Divija C, Ann Arbor, MI

Updated: May 24, 2020

Medulloblastoma is the most common malignant tumor in the central nervous system in children. This brain cancer usually develops in the cerebellum, which mainly controls muscle coordination, balance, and movement. Medulloblastoma spreads through cerebrospinal fluid to other areas around the brain and the spinal cord, and rarely spreads to other parts of the body. The cancer is divided into four subgroups: WNT, SHH, Group C, and Group D.

WNT was named after the predominant signaling pathways thought to be affected in its pathogenesis. WNT tumors are involved in the formation of synapses in the cerebellum. It is the rarest subgroup of Medulloblastoma, accounting for about 11%, but it has a long-term prognosis and an overall high survival rate.

Divija, a Junior High School Student, Ann Arbor, MI with her partner conducted extensive research and concluded that the upregulation of the a particular type of gene called LEF1 gene in the WNT subgroup, which plays a part in the WNT signaling pathway, and has the GO Biological process of cell migration, may connect to Medulloblastoma metastasis. According to KEGG pathways, the WNT signaling pathway relates to Ubiquitin mediated proteolysis, which suggests that Medulloblastoma cells kill healthy cells by killing necessary proteins.

Her research suggests that a possible treatment could be gene therapy as it may be able to correct the mutations in the LEF1 gene.

Hearty congratulations Divija for your wonderful work.

Keep up the great work!!


AVS Academy


1. (n.d.). Retrieved from

2. (n.d.). Retrieved from signaling pathway

3. DeSouza, R., Jones, B. R., Lowis, S. P., & Kurian, K. M. (2014). Retrieved from

4. GEO Accession viewer. (n.d.). Retrieved from

5. DeSouza, Ruth-Mary, et al. Frontiers in Oncology, Frontiers Media S.A., 2014,

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