Luke back from US treatment

Luke Blignaut, seven, has a rare genetic condition, and is one of ten children in the world taking part in an experimental trial of a new treatment. His family need to raise �300,000 for him to go. Picture of him with his brother Quinton, six, and mum Nicky.

Luke Blignaut, seven, has a rare genetic condition, and is one of ten children in the world taking part in an experimental trial of a new treatment. His family need to raise �300,000 for him to go. Picture of him with his brother Quinton, six, and mum Nicky.

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Brave Luke Blignaut has returned from the US where he has started a clinical trial into a pioneering new treatment.

Luke, seven, of West End Avenue, Aketon, who has Hurler syndrome, travelled to America with his mum Nicky to undergo tests before he starts the two-year trial, which will see him receive weekly enzyme infusions in Manchester.

The terminal genetic condition causes mental and physical deterioration, and Luke has already had a bone marrow transplant from his brother Quinton, six, to halt the progress of the mental decline.

He is one of ten children taking part in the clinical trial, which it is hoped will arrest or slow down the physical problems. Nicky said: “Luke got through all his tests like a little trooper and loved the Mall of America on his last day – it kind of made it all worthwhile to him.”

The family is fundraising to help charity the MPS Society pay for the treatment, with £300,000 still to be raised. Luke’s school All Saints’ J&I in Featherstone held a cake and coffee afternoon, which raised £426.50, while local firm Ross Travel has donated £100 and a number of businesses in the town have put collection tins in their shops.

Featherstone Rovers is also supporting the family’s fundraising bid.

Nicky added: “I have been amazed by the generosity of our local community. It is so nice to know that there are so many kind and good people in the world.”