"My Dad adored my kids.
I’m so sad he never met
my youngest.”

Wish you were here Dad

Have you lost someone you love to heart disease?

Sally lost her Dad. He had a heart attack in his sleep.

 “He was my best friend as well as my Dad. We spoke every day,” she says, unable to keep her tears from spilling over.

 “He really loved my kids. I’m so sad he never got to meet my youngest.”

 “Even though it’s been three years since we lost him, when we have any sort of occasion like a birthday or Father’s Day … We miss him terribly. We feel this big gap in our lives,” she says.

 If you’ve lost someone too, you would know that losing them leaves a gap in your life – a big gap.

 That’s why gifts to heart research are so important.

 You give hoping you will help save someone you love in the future.

I know that this might seem a little unreal, but a small, striped, freshwater fish could hold the key to repairing damaged hearts.

 The Victor Chang Institute’s Dr Kazu Kikuchi and his team have discovered that in zebrafish, a unique immune cell is central to repairing not only damaged hearts, but also the spinal cord and retinal tissue in the eyes.

 What they have found is that when there is an injury to a zebrafish, these special immune cells make their way to the site of the injury and then somehow change their function so they can repair the specific injured tissue.

 “So if the heart needs repairing, they’ll adapt to the heart, or if the spinal cord needs healing they’ll change to suit the spine, and so forth,” explains Dr Kikuchi.

 “Imagine if we could do that in humans.”

 Sally hopes that by the time her children have grown up, this could be a reality.

 Her father and both her father’s parents died of heart disease in their 60s, so the risk for the rest of the family is very real.

Every life lost to heart disease leaves an unfillable gap, and that’s why research like Dr Kikuchi’s is so important. I do hope you’ll choose to be part of this future by giving a donation today.

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