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When Livia was born, her parents Kirsti and Brett had no idea that there was anything wrong. Their beautiful daughter was born full term and a healthy 7lbs 11ozs. But a few weeks later, her family began to notice that Livia had trouble focusing and stared straight through the faces around her.
Doctors confirmed what her parents feared; that Livia’s optic nerve had not developed and that this was a result of an ‘underdeveloped’ brain. Neurologists told her devastated mother that Livia may never speak or walk and would need round-the-clock care for the rest of her life.
Against all odds, Livia began to walk just before her first birthday and her parents still hold hope that she will one day be able to communicate.
Researchers haven’t yet pinpointed which gene caused Livia’s condition.
Professor Patrick Tam has been working for over 40 years on developing ‘fate maps’. It’s about revealing how cells are put together to form the building blocks for different parts of the body and how that development is controlled by signals and genetic switches. Understanding this can lead to explaining how birth defects and genetic diseases occur.
The new BioMark HD System allows Professor Tam to analyse the activity of a multitude of functionally-related genes at single-cell resolution at a higher quality, and in less time.
CMRI needs your support in raising $50,000 to purchase this vital technology, which will allow the research to advance at a much faster rate.
It can be difficult to obtain research grants to support this work because of the long timeframes needed. That’s why it is so important that CMRI can count on the support of a community of people like you.
Together, we can find new ways to protect our precious children. We believe every child deserves every chance at a healthy future.