Gain of 1q is one of the most common alterations in cancer and has been associated with adverse clinical behaviour in ependymoma. The aim of this study was to investigate this region to gain insight into the role of 1q genes in intracranial paediatric ependymoma. To address this issue we generated profiles of eleven ependymoma, including two relapse pairs and seven primary tumours, using comparative genome hybridisation and serial analysis of gene expression. Analysis of 656 SAGE tags mapping to 1q identified CHI3L1 and S100A10 as the most upregulated genes in the relapse pair with de novo 1q gain upon recurrence. Moreover, three more members of the S100 family had distinct gene expression profiles in ependymoma. Candidates (CHI3L1, S100A10, S100A4, S100A6 and S100A2) were validated using immunohistochemistry on a tissue microarray of 74 paediatric ependymoma. In necrotic cases, CHI3L1 demonstrated a distinct staining pattern in tumour cells adjacent to the areas of necrosis. S100A6 significantly correlated with supratentorial tumours (P<0.001) and S100A4 with patients under the age of 3 years at diagnosis (P=0.038). In conclusion, this study provides evidence that S100A6 and S100A4 are differentially expressed in clinically relevant subgroups, and also demonstrates a link between CHI3L1 protein expression and necrosis in intracranial paediatric ependymoma.