One year ago this week...
In October of 2017, my daughter and I started an experiment, both figuratively and literally.
Raena is 17 and has a rare disease called Friedreich's Ataxia. There is no treatment or cure. We want to change that,
So, last year, we approached a local research laboratory with a proposal: if they would agree to research her disease, we would agree to raise $75,000 and fund the first year.
This is not how science normally works, but it sure worked here: within two weeks, the lab agreed, and within six weeks after that, we had raised $90,000 for one year's worth of new research from family, friends, and total strangers, and also made some headlines.
One year later, I'm back to tell you that our experiment is an ongoing success. By August of this year, the laboratory made a new and potentially groundbreaking discovery, which may hold the keys for a treatment or cure, or, which can pave the way for the next big breakthrough.
But there is still a lot of work to be done. The process of refining laboratory discoveries and translating them into drug discoveries is not easy or quick or cheap. The study that we funded costs about $1,730 every week...for laboratory space, chemicals, research staff, animals, and supplies. Nuts-and-bolts work like this is the key to turning knowledge into solutions.
On Sunday, November 4th, I will be running the New York City Marathon with a group from our Friedriech's Ataxia community--family members of patients who are just as desperate as we are to find a cure. (And I'll be running side-by-side with my cousin Angie, who is the best marathon coach on the planet, and who is also helping to raise money.) As a group, our team's goal is to raise $20,000 by November 4th for FARA.
FARA funds basic research, drug development, clinical trials, and scientific conferences to provide hope for a cure. For more information please visit their website curefa.org
Money really does cure disease. With enough time and enough effort, science can solve virtually any problem. Our efforts over the last year have proven this. And every single new dollar brings us closer to The Finish Line.
My goal is to raise $5,200 for this marathon, which is equal to $200 per mile, and, it's also equal to funding three more weeks of this kind of research.
Can you help us with $400, $200, $100, or $25? Click the red "Donate" button.
(and YES! we can take checks in addition to online donations...make it out to "FARA" and mail it to Dan Brendtro, PO Box 2583, Sioux Falls, SD 57101)
All donations to FARA are tax-deductible.