Rhys Harris who was isolated in a "bubble" for
two months after he developed a mycobacterial infection has become the first
person to be cured of the deadly disease following a bone marrow transplant.
Harris underwent chemotherapy for eight weeks prior to
receiving a new bone marrow. His disease is a rare one called Nuclear Factor
Kappa B Essential Modulator, which destroyed his white blood cells thus
requiring a transplant.
He had the transplant in October last year and learned yesterday
that it had been successful. "Rhys just went through hell and back and
back to hell again - it was a really tough time for all of us. He is really
tough and resilient. He is a normal seven year old boy apart from this who
loves rugby and adores his brother," his father Kevin Harris told the
Dr Mario Abinun, a
consultant paediatric immunologist at Newcastle General Hospital, revealed that
just 25 such procedures were performed annually in the UK.