World Cancer Day 2020

This World Cancer Day we'd like to share a film with you all

about the incredible research project, led by Dr Owen Williams, that we are joint funding with Great Ormond Street Hospital and Children's Charity.

Dr Owen Williams is currently researching how to produce new leukaemia treatments for children that will be more effective, less toxic and with fewer side effects than those currently used.

A leukaemia diagnosis can have a devastating impact on families. Dr Williams explains that while most people still think leukaemia is fatal, which was the case around 50 years ago, medicine has made tremendous strides in the treatment of childhood leukaemia since then. “Most children will now survive,” he says, "however, children will have to undergo many years of treatment and this is a huge burden on families.”

Rowan was diagnosed with leukemia in April 2015. In August 2018, Rowan rang the end of treatment bell but is still suffering from side affects of his treatment, including fatigue and mobility problems.

"If kinder treatments can be found, or treatments that cut down on the treatment time, it would be so important for the families and for children like Rowan." Says Abby, Rowan's mum.

Dr Williams and his team recently discovered that mebendazole can be used as a treatment against leukaemia, a real revelation as mebendazole is used to treat worm infections in children.

Clinicians and scientists are always looking for less toxic therapies that effectively fight leukaemia. “It’s our hope that mebendazole will be one such example,” Dr Williams says.

🌟 A big Sparks thank you to Rowan and Abby for sharing their story with us and also to Dr Owen Williams, for the incredible research he is doing. #WorldCancerDay