Superheroes join forces to help in battle to find cure for Crohn’s disease

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A group of “superheroes” are joining TV magician Dynamo to help a Scots charity in the battle to find the cause of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

Cure Crohn’s Colitis (C3) was founded several years ago by businessman Ivor Tiefenbrun MBE, who suffers from ulcerative colitis, one of the two devastating forms of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).

Ivor is travelling to Stone in Staffordshire on Sunday, May 29, to meet the charity’s newest supporters “IBD SuperHeroes,” a fundraising team set up by IBD sufferers Sahara Fleetwood-Beresford, Corinne Vanessa Burns, Lisa Cummins, Roger Pasfield, Kelly Tots Pasfield, AJ Mooney, Stephen Gomm and Lee Kelly. The group are raising cash exclusively for C3, which donates 100 per cent of its funds to medical research.

Since they set up a couple of months ago, the team have already raised more than £3,000. The team join TV magician Dynamo, who has also given his backing to the charity in its bid to beat the two devastating inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).

Scotland has one of the highest rates of IBD in the world. In young people, the incidence has doubled every 10 years for the past four decades.

It is a devastating and life-long condition causing severe abdominal pain, sickness, extreme fatigue and diarrhea. Victims are also at high risk of bowel cancer.

C3 based near Glasgow, is embarking on a four-year £475,000 research project to find the environmental factors which trigger the two devastating inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).

C3 has secured a £225,000 grant from the Scottish Government’s Chief Scientist Office for the research.

The charity has donated £125,000 from its own funds and fellow charity Crohn’s and Colitis in Childhood, based in London, has given another £125,000.

Researchers hope the study, called PREdiCCT, will help determine if environmental factors, especially diet, and gut bacteria play a part in developing the condition and influence the severity of the disease.

The project will involve 1500 IBD patients currently in remission. The first batch are expected to be selected in January. If the research is successful, it will help scientists to design better treatments.

One of the co-investigators in the research team is Glasgow consultant gastroenterologist Dr Daniel Gaya, who is on the board of trustees at C3.

Dr Gaya said: “IBD is a common cause of chronic ill-health among young people in Scotland which has one of the highest incidences of it in the world. An estimated 1 in 200 adults and 1 in 2000 children will develop the disease.

“Understanding who gets severe, progressive disease and why, is an urgent research priority. Accurate prediction of these patients will enable precise, tailored intervention early in the disease course.”

TV magician Dynamo, who suffers from IBD, is a supporter of the charity.

He said: “It’s a fantastic charity. I have suffered from Crohn’s disease for 15 years now and a cure is desperately needed.

“This research is providing real hope of new treatments. Please give any donation you can to this great charity.”

To donate or find out more about C3, visit www.curecrohnscolitis.org, email info@curecrohnscolitis.org or call 0141 307 7777.