Gene Therapy

Earl and I got the news last evening that the “Phase 2 Trial of Gene Therapy for Parkinson’s Disease” announced success with the study.

“We are extremely pleased that years of  research by our group with AAV vector gene transfer technology has led to the unprecedented milestone of a statistically significant improvement in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of gene therapy…”  “We now have solid scientific evidence to support NLX-P101 as an important, potential treatment for this devastating disease.”

As you may know, I was part of this study and had brain surgery October 8, 2009.  I did not think that I had gotten the gene, however, as I still had to take a lot of medicine to keep going.  Both Earl and I surmised that I was in the “sham group”. Last evening we were informed, through email, that I did indeed get the gene and that much of my symptoms may have been caused by over-medicating. We are extremely grateful that I do not have to go through the brain surgery again.

The report sent to me states:

“The trial also showed that NLX-P101 was well-tolerated with no serious adverse events related to the drug or procedure reported.  All treated subjects will continue to be monitored for safety for a 12-month period following their surgical procedure.”

We want to thank you for your prayers and concern for us. Hope is renewed as we press on.


Teacher Training

teacher training

We will have our last day of our Spring Teacher Training tomorrow.  It has been well-attended and the staff is open, attentive, and communicative throughout our time together.  Many teachers helped us in translating the material into Georgian and countless other ways.  We are truly blessed to have such a great staff at The School of Tomorrow.

During the service at The Sameba Cathedral on Sunday, I felt that we should ask one of our lovely teachers who sings so beautifully to sing for us our opening song. She was quick to agree to do it.  What a delight to begin our time together with our Nino singing, “Ava Maria”.

Our theme for the training was “Get Set!”  The following poem was used to illustrate our theme and as I read it, Earl demonstrated what “get set” means in a foot race:

Get On Your Mark To “Get Set”
Let us run the race set before us.
God calls each of us today.
He has asked us all to be ready.
To be prepared to follow and obey.

If we keep our eyes upon Jesus.
If we look to see His dear face.
And remember what He has done for us.
We’ll not fear to run in this race.

If we are ready to go, we should get on our mark.
We must lay aside every weight.
We have been training to run with endurance.
We are on time; we’ll not be late.

Today, we cannot linger longer.
We must get on our mark; hear His call.
It’s time to throw aside all that would hinder.
Or cause us to stumble and fall.

get setIf you’re ready, Earli Babe, line up quickly.
Show them all how you run to win.
If you get set right and hit it at the whistle.
Don’t jump the gun for that’s like a sin.

The race is often won at the start.
You must get set; you’ll not stumble or fall.
If we work together and choose to improve.
The School of Tomorrow will be best of all.

Learning is always our goal.
And change is before us each day.
Let’s listen to each other and God.
Will surely show us the way.

Let’s determine to not grow weary.
Or let our hands all hang down.
Let’s look to the Master to help us.
Stay alert and listening to what others have found.

His love is the key in this conquest.
Our enemy cannot cause us to lose.
If through following Him we’ll be triumphant.
It’s by faith in our Lord; we would choose.

Oh, this race may not be so easy.
We may grow weary and tempted to slow down.
But we’ll gain the prize if we endure with joy.
Not slowing or stopping; we’ll win the crown.

It’s all about running to win.
So, losing is never our choice.
Each day is another chance to excel.
Get set then to win and rejoice.       JT

Hebrews 12:1,2a
“Therefore, we also, since we are surrounded by so great a crowd of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight and sin which so easily ensnares us and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.”