A DAD whose son suffers from a terminal muscle-wasting disease hopes to help ground-breaking medical research by setting up a foundation – which he’s launching with a big fundraising event.
Mark Creswick, aged 36, from High Green, Sheffield, has established Harley’s Fight Foundation, named after his son Harley, six, who has Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
The condition affects just 2,500 youngsters in the UK, and Harley, a pupil at Coit Primary in Chapeltown, is not expected to reach his 30th birthday.
A team at Sheffield University has discovered that medication currently used for cancer treatment also ‘switches off’ signals in the body which lead to Duchenne’s.
The fact the drugs are already approved for medical use means therapy could be available within the next decade.
Mark said he was spurred on to help after talking to Sheffield-based neuromuscular scientist Professor Steve Winder.
He said: “When we heard about the work Steve was doing we just wanted to set up a fund.
“It was the first time I had heard that the project was being done in Sheffield and it was inspiring that he had done so much and was so close to helping boys like Harley fight the condition.”
Prof Winder said he was ‘delighted’ to hear his work had inspired the family.
Mark and his wife Dawn, who also have a daughter called Freya, two, are to hold the first Harley’s Fight Foundation event - a night of dog racing at Owlerton greyhound stadium - on April 12.
The family is looking for sponsors for the 16 races, with all cash raised going to the Muscular Dystrophy Campaign, which funds Prof Winder’s work.
* To buy tickets, which start at £10, call Mark on 07583807307, or visit Harley’s Fight Foundation to donate.