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Original message: ENGLEWOOD, CO--Ryan Dunne is 9-years-old, a third grader who has Duchenne muscular dystrophy which is a terminal disease. DMD has no known treatment. Kids with this genetic defect start to get weaker in elementary school and are often confined to an electric wheelchair by middle school. Few survive into their 20s because their bodies become progressively weaker until they lose the function of their lungs and heart. Ryan was fortunate because he was part of a group of boys that were in a study to test the effectiveness and safety of two new medicines awaiting FDA approval. During the six months he took these drugs, Ryan had marked improvements in his strength, stamina, and overall health. Those trials ended in September and since then, Ryan--along with other boys in the trial--are rapidly deteriorating. Despite the drug's lead investigator, Jerry Mendell, saying that it works, The FDA has yet to place these live-saving medications on track for accelerated approval, saying, "We recognize the huge unmet medical need in Duchene muscular dystrophy, the devastating nature of the disease for patients and their families, and the great urgency to make new treatments available." In hopes of accelerating the approval process, the Dunne family has started a petition on WhiteHouse.gov. They need 100,000 signatures by March 29, 2014 to have this issue addressed. Background Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-y5coYJaeuY ###
   
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