A GRIEVING couple who lost their four-year-old son to brain cancer are urging people to sign an e-petition calling for more research into the devastating disease.
Devoted parents, Barry and Natalie Linden from Ayr were heartbroken after their son Aidan died a month before his fifth birthday in 2013.
Now the couple, both 38, are campaigning with the charity Brain Tumour Research to get people to sign an e-petition calling for more funding for brain tumour research.
They hope the petition will lead to a parliamentary debate on the subject.
Brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer - yet just one per cent of the national spend on cancer research has been allocated to this devastating disease.
Barry and Natalie, along with family, friends and supporters, have raised over £83,000 for Brain Tumour Research since they lost their first born child.
Aidan had been diagnosed with a brain tumour aged just 17 months, but despite trying all treatments available at the time, including chemotherapy, radiotherapy stem cell rescue and a trial drug, these were not effective in overcoming the disease and he died after a brave three and a half year battle.
Natalie said: “In April it will be three years since we lost Aidan, but time hasn’t made that loss any easier. Research into paediatric brain tumours and how to treat them effectively is the only thing that can save the lives of other children like Aidan.
“We find it heart-breaking that although brain tumours kill more children and adults under the age of 40 than any other cancer, just one per cent of the national spend on cancer research is allocated to this devastating disease.
“Due to research, the prognosis for many other cancers has improved significantly over the last 20 years, but the prognosis for brain tumours has changed very little, with on average only 20% of sufferers expected to survive beyond five years.
“We have a real chance to bring about change here. If the petition reaches 100,000 names by 3rd February it could lead to a House of Commons debate. This would be a great milestone and bring hope to the 16,000 people who are diagnosed with a brain tumour each year and their families.”
The petition has received more than 60,000 signatures so far and, along with many other patients and bereaved families across the UK, Barry and Natalie are working with the national charity Brain Tumour Research to encourage people to get involved by signing.
You can sign the petition here: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/105560
More information at www.braintumourresearch.org