Genomic medicine saved Hosam's life

Hosam was 25 when diagnosed with brain cancer. Read how genomic medicine helped him beat the odds.

was first diagnosed with a rare type of brain cancer in 2009. I was 25, newly married and it was Christmas Eve. The diagnosis came as a shock to me — I didn’t know anything about brain cancer. 

"I just thought it was a death sentence."

In 2010 I had my first brain surgery; a couple of years later it spread to my shoulder and later it re-appeared in my brain. In 2018 my oncologist found tumours in my lungs, it was continuing to spread.

There were 12 tumours altogether — too many to treat or remove. I can’t describe what that day was like for us.

Then my doctor told me about the MoST clinical trial run by Garvan. I was accepted and offered the drug I needed to stay alive, at no cost. Can you imagine the impact that had? When you're given an option, you’re given hope.

Since starting the treatment, I feel great! My oncologist explained the drugs may stop working at some stage, but Garvan is working hard to find other treatments that could add years to my life.

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If it wasn’t for the ongoing genomic research at Garvan, many people, including me, would have no options left.

I had no history of cancer in my family. I lived a healthy lifestyle. I try to tell people, if it happened to me, it could happen to you.

"Cancer does not discriminate."

Instead of telling someone with breast cancer they can have treatment A or B, Garvan's able to look at the genetic makeup of that particular cancer and provide targeted treatments. The drug I’m taking was initially developed for skin cancer.

I can’t express how grateful I am. Garvan has extended my life. My family is everything to me. I have three amazing children and a very courageous wife. We are moving on and we're positive about the future, thanks to the hope given through medical research.