British actress Helena Bonham Carter is the new patron of Action Duchenne, the Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Charity.

Bonham Carter is the latest of a line of celebrities to support Action Duchenne, the Charity established to support parents and sufferers of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. Duchenne affects 2,500 people in the UK and about 40,000 people worldwide. It has no cure and is caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene that prevent correct reading of the genetic code, the result of which is that the essential muscle protein dystrophin is not produced. This results in progressive muscle wasting, severely limiting mobility in teenage patients (boys and men) and leading to premature death in their twenties from respiratory or cardiac problems (the heart muscle is directly affected by the genetic defect).

“As a patron of Action Duchenne, I would like to urge as many people as possible to find out about the work of the charity and the devastating effects of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy,” said Bonham Carter. “Treatments and a cure seem tantalisingly close but they will not appear without further support and funding. Please join Action Duchenne in helping to make muscle wasting history.”

The actress becomes the first patron of the charity and joins other famous supporters of the charity, including Tim Henman, Mike Brearley, Maureen Lipman, Lloyd Honeyghan, David Puttnam and Bryan Robson.

“Helena Bonham Carter and our other supporters provide an incredible boost to all Duchenne sufferers and their families,” said Nick Catlin, CEO of Action Duchenne. “It is uplifting that people whose lives are untouched by this disease are still able to demonstrate compassion and support for families that are affected by this devastating, life-limiting condition. We are very grateful to all our patrons and the support that they give – our fundraising efforts will continue to be a focus to find a cure for this disease.”

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