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It only seems like yesterday that a few of us sat down at breakfast with our close friend Daryl back in January at a small coffee shop in Vancouver – although clearly sick, Daryl with his perennial tan, possessed the usual twinkle in his eyes and demonstrated a burning desire to beat his cancer. To the rest of us at the table, it was always both amazing and inspiring to feel Daryl’s extraordinary and seemingly endless flow of positive energy. Aggressive metastasized prostate cancer was ravaging his body, but his fight and his spirit were fully in tact and on display once again. The simple question at breakfast of “What can we do to help?” has morphed into the building of what will promise to be one of the great undertakings within our community and turn what we termed Daryl’s Heidelberg Hope into Daryl’s Heidelberg Legacy – Daryl unfortunately passed away this past weekend. We have all been impressed beyond expression with Daryl’s resolve to beat his cancer, but alas, the cumulative affect of so many different attempts to battle back the flames over the past three years finally enveloped his body. To the very last minute his positive attitude, dignity, insightfulness, introspection and self-deprecating humour were soundly intact. Daryl’s legacy will result in introducing an emerging treatment for aggressive prostate cancer into the North American market. This particular treatment, which has been limited to “compassionate care” cases (terminal) in Germany has had tremendous efficacy rates, and our team goal is to raise the requisite dollars sufficient to conduct the first ever two clinical trials, and right here in British Columbia. Daryl for those who knew him was always the smartest guy at the table – few will contest that. And Daryl not only believed in the Heidelberg Hope, but he had measurably positive results when he went to Germany in May for his first treatment. The doctors post-treatment confirmed the material shrinkage in his tumours (riddled throughout his body). Aptly named Daryl’s Heidelberg Hope, this is a new treatment developed in Germany that has had tremendous efficacy rates as indicated above. 75% of metastasized prostate patients who were given two to four months to live were not only alive six months after receiving the treatment, but their tumours had shrunk and they had lower levels of PSMA in their blood. In layman’s terms, the treatment is a radiopharmaceutical that is injected by IV. The IV is loaded with a radioactive element (Lutetium) that has been chemically bound to a certain antibody. This combination, upon injection, circulates throughout the body attaching itself to cancer cells and killing them. Perhaps most encouraging, this treatment kills cancer cells wherever they reside – the bones, lymph nodes, soft tissue organs or simply in the bloodstream. Daryl suffered from three of these four indications. We have met with Sarah Roth, CEO of the BC Cancer Foundation and Dr. Francois Benard, head of Research at the BC Cancer Agency a number of times over the past six months. We have their full commitment (this will be a collaboration with BCCA, VGH and UBC), a defined budget (approx. $4.5mm) with deliverables and a timeline. The intent is to start two clinical trials towards the end of the year. Two firsts: • All proceeds will go directly to fund the two very specific clinical trials; and • 100% of your funds will go to this research – no administrative costs will come off the top. The Ride to Conquer Cancer will be August 26 and 27th from Vancouver to Seattle, but the race begins today. Daryl knew that the Heidelberg Hope was never just about Daryl, and he wanted to be the one to make the change for the benefit of the rest of us who will inevitably be faced with the same risk of prostate cancer – and he has made that change! But the baton has now been passed. We will make this happen! Thanks for taking the time to get all the way through this message - we would love your support by donating!
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