Cumbria

Carlisle boy Stanley Dalton in cancer treatment race against time

Stanley Dalton with his sister Delilah, as she reads him a book
Image caption Stanley has returned home where he lives with his sister, Delilah

A two-year-old boy fighting an aggressive form of cancer has "just weeks" for his family to raise £500,000 to help fund potentially life-saving treatment not available in the UK.

Stanley Dalton was diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia early last year.

Almost £150,000 has already been raised towards the cost of sending the Carlisle youngster to Singapore.

His mother Georgia Brecken said she "cannot imagine life without him".

Stanley has been treated in the Great North Children's Hospital based at Newcastle's Royal Victoria Infirmary.

His family were told earlier this month his cancer had returned after he was twice in remission.

"It was a total shock," Ms Brecken said. "We were told his leukaemia was back and that they couldn't fix him this time.

"He'd been doing so well at home with his sister, Delilah, and back in his own environment.

"It would mean the world [to send him to Singapore]. I can't imagine life without him."

Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Stanley was diagnosed with leukaemia aged 16 months

His father, Lee Dalton, said it would be "a matter of get up and go" if the family reached their £500,000 target through the JustGiving website.

Stanley has had two bone marrow transplants and is taking a trial drug which has helped control his illness but cannot cure it.

While some cell therapies are available in the UK, medical experts say none would target his form of cancer.

Dr Geoff Shenton, a consultant paediatric haematologist at the Great North Children's Hospital, described the CAR-T treatment available in Singapore as "pioneering".

It would see T cells from Stanley's immune system modified and "essentially turned into super soldiers killing abnormal cells in his body".

"Time is of the essence," Dr Shenton said. "The treatment is potentially curative. Without it, he will die.

"We've got a small window when he would be well enough to travel - probably the next four weeks."

The clinical trial would see Stanley treated in Singapore for about a year, with the half a million pounds covering the associated costs of hospital care.

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