A Scots charity is playing a key role in the battle to find the cause of Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.
And it is being backed in its bid to beat the chronic conditions by TV magician Dynamo.
Cure Crohn’s Colitis (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).
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.
C3, founded by southside businessman Ivor Tiefenbrun MBE of Linn Products in the south side of the city, who suffers from ulcerative colitis, 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 firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0141 307 7777.