Former Leeds captain Rob Burrow hopes he might have discovered a medical lifeline in his battle with Motor Neurone Disease.
The 38-year-old, who played for the Rhinos for 16 years, was diagnosed with MND in December 2019 and is now confined to a wheelchair, able to communicate only through an eye-driven communication device and cared for full-time by his wife Lindsey.
But a drug treatment that has seen improved life expectancy in 44 per cent of cases during trials conducted in the United States could ease Burrow’s symptoms and give him more time with his wife and three children while work to develop a cure continues.
Burrow told the Sunday Mirror: “This drug is my hope that I will see my kids grow up. Without this drug it will be a bleak outcome. I worry about leaving Lindsey to raise our kids alone – it is the last thing I want to do.
“I want to see my trio all reach 18 and so I live in hope. I am a realist but without hope there is nothing.”
Burrow, who was given approximately two years to live, spoke frankly about his condition in his recently released autobiography ‘Too Many Reasons to Live’.
His father Geoff, 70, discovered the drug, which is known as AMX0035 and targets the toxic proteins that cause neurological diseases, during an internet search.
Geoff Burrow is determined to help his son find a cure for MND and believes it is now within “touching distance”.
“The new drug gives Rob the drive to get up and carry on each day,” he said. “He is living with, not dying from, MND. And I will help him do that while I have breath in my body.
“It’s not just about maintaining Rob’s life, it’s about the potential behind it. I firmly believe we are in
touching distance of a cure.
“This drug seems to have had incredible results and this could be Rob’s chance until a cure is found.
“We have to beat this – we are going to. I’ve got to believe that as I won’t allow myself to think any other way.”