JJ cash to fund new drugs trial

Jack and Alex Johnson
Jack and Alex Johnson

A Wigan-based charity is helping to fund a trial looking at whether an existing drug could be used to treat a serious genetic disorder.

Joining Jack has contributed £291,000 to a study into tamoxifen, which is used to treat breast cancer, as well as for hormonal disorders in pre-pubescent boys.

They want to assess the safety and efficacy of tamoxifen as a potential treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

The money will help to fund one European trial site and two in the UK, along with a project manager based in Switzerland. Joining Jack is working with the DMD Hub to support the trial sites in the UK, which will be at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool and Leeds Children’s Hospital.

It is also providing funding to support clinical staff at Alder Hey and Leeds.

The trial is being funded by Joining Jack, Duchenne UK, E-Rare, Duchenne Parent Project in Holland and the Monaco Association Against Muscular Dystrophy.

Joining Jack was set up by Andy and Alex Johnson to fund research into Duchenne as their nine-year-old son Jack has the condition.

Fund-raisers include the popular Wigan 10k, Run Wigan Festival and the inaugural Wigan Bike Ride held last month.

Emily Crossley and Alex Johnson, co-founders of Duchenne UK, said: “We are delighted to announce our funding and support for the tamoxifen trial and our support for the trial sites in the UK who will be running the study.

“Tamoxifen is a cheap and readily available medicine, with a good safety record in adults. We are keen to test this in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

“If this trial is successful, we could see a cheap, effective and readily available treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy in the very near future.”