Brain Sciences


UCL research project receives funding as part of a £2.1m cash boost into childhood rare disease

1 March 2019

UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology Professor Dimitri Kullmann received £190,404 from Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and Sparks, the children’s medical research charity, to fund research into the advancement of treatment into epilepsy.


This is part of a £2.1 million investment into child health research projects across the UK led by the two charities. This injection of funds in to paediatric research will provide a huge boost to an area of research that is severely underfunded. 

Professor Dimitri Kullman is developing a new technique to correct the genetic mistake responsible for focal cortical dysplasia (FCD), the most common cause of drug-resistant epilepsy in children. The treatment aims to stop a child’s seizures, which in many cases cannot currently be helped by drugs or surgery. 

Professor Kullman said: “I am delighted to have received funding from GOSH Charity and Sparks which will enable me to further my work in research for focal cortical dysplasia (FCD). It’s fantastic to know that these charities are making such a large amount available for child health researchers across the UK to bid for each year.” 

The £2.1 million will support 12 pioneering projects researching some of the most difficult and hard to treat childhood diseases. Based at eight institutions across the UK from Sheffield to London, they aim to improve diagnosis and develop more effective and kinder treatments for children who desperately need them.

Kiki Syrad, Director of Grants and Impact at Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity says: “We were delighted to receive a large number of high-quality applications from the UK pediatric research community on a range of diseases. For many children, research is their only hope. We look forward to seeing how Professor Kullmann’s project progresses, and the call re-opening later in 2019.” 

The projects supported also reflect the ambition of both GOSH Charity and Sparks to drive new tests and therapies from the lab bench to the patient’s bedside, speeding up the diagnosis and treatment of rare and complex conditions. 


Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity


Professor Dimitri Kullmann  
UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology  
Great Ormond Street Hospital   
Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity