Quebec woman hopes for experimental cancer treatment in U.S. – CTV News Montreal

Share Article

A 22-year-old Chambly woman diagnosed with cancer could be the first Canadian to take part in an experimental treatment in Texas after exhausting her options in her home country.
Maria Muscari was diagnosed at 18 years old with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She gave up her nursing studies program at Champlain College to undergo extensive cancer treatments, including chemotherapy and immunotherapy.
"It’s been lonely, it’s been hard," she said.
Four years later, her cancer is still not responding to the nine treatments she’s had.
"We don’t really have anything here that can provide her with hope and a remission and a cure," said Dr. April Shamy, Muscari’s oncologist at the Jewish General Hospital.
Yet, Dr. Shamy has cautiously offered some hope.
She says Muscari is a good fit for an experimental treatment offered by the MD Anderson Cancer Centre in Houston, Texas.
This new treatment prompts the body’s natural killer cells to attack the Hodgkin cells.
"Everyone has natural killer cells in their bodies, mine just happen to be lazy and don’t work as well to recognize the cancer cells in my body and to fight them off and kill them," said Muscari.
To qualify as a candidate for this clinical trial, that is not offered in Canada, Muscari had to have exhausted all her care options at home first.
"We got the best treatment at the Jewish General. It was amazing and they brought (her) to where they can bring her. They couldn’t bring her any further and now what’s happening… they’re keeping her alive until we can get to that treatment," said her stepfather Rick Kidder.
The first hurdle has already been cleared.
Dr. Yago Nieto has approved Muscari as a candidate for the next phase of clinical trials in Texas this September.
The data shows that "the response rate is 94 per cent, and all 24 patients who received the same dose that Maria will receive have responded. The complete remission rate is 69 per cent," he said.
Dr. Shamy says those numbers are promising.
"For people like Maria who’ve had multiple lines of therapy, that’s unheard of. And our goal for a 22-year-old woman is an opportunity for a cure," she said.
Now the next hurdle is financial: expenses for this trip could total $325,000.
Muscari and her family have set up a GoFundMe page to collect donations.
"I really do believe this treatment will save me, it will save me, definitely," said Muscari.
It’s a life-or-death decision, added Kidder.
"We have to get there, or she will die," he said. "We have to get her there."
Canada is headed towards a moderate recession, but the economic contraction is expected to be short-lived compared to previous recessions, economists with Royal Bank of Canada predict.

James Caan, the curly-haired tough guy known to movie fans as the hotheaded Sonny Corleone of "The Godfather" and to television audiences as both the dying football player in the classic weeper "Brian's Song" and the casino boss in "Las Vegas," has died. He was 82.

A Quebec man who fell and broke his jaw, cheekbone and a bone around his left eye while visiting British Columbia says his surgery was cancelled after he was told his home province “won't pay” for the procedure.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced his resignation Thursday after droves of top government officials quit over the latest scandal to engulf him, marking an end to three tumultuous years in which he tried to brazen out one ethical lapse after another with a combination of charm, bluster and denial.

Amid U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s resignation following a handful of political scandals, there is now a universally recognized satirical tune blasting outside the Parliament building in Westminster, thanks to actor Hugh Grant.

Ukraine opposes Canada's handing over a turbine to Russia's Gazprom that Moscow says is critical for supplying natural gas to Germany and Kyiv believes such a move would flout sanctions on Russia, a Ukrainian energy ministry source said on Thursday.

The Commissioner of Canada Elections' office says it has received and is reviewing information related to the allegations raised by the Conservative Party of Canada that now-disqualified leadership contender Patrick Brown's campaign violated federal election financing rules.

While several women reached out to to share the ease with which they were able to access abortion services in Canada, experts say availability varies widely depending on a number of factors, such as geography, race and socioeconomic status.

With Russia's military action in Ukraine in its fifth month, Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday warned Kyiv that it should quickly accept Moscow's terms or brace for the worst, adding ominously that Russia has barely started its action.

Ontario is set to make a decision early next week on whether to expand eligibility of fourth doses of COVID-19 vaccines, amid a seventh wave of the virus, the province's top doctor said Thursday.

One of the five men who heroically jumped in to save a man from a burning vehicle on an Ontario highway said the rescue happened 'literally the nick of time' before the car exploded in flames.

Toronto city council passed a motion Wednesday that could see cats banned from roaming freely outdoors.

The public inquiry investigating the 2020 Nova Scotia mass shooting has issued a new subpoena to the RCMP, following concerns the federal police force has withheld documents related to the deaths of 22 people.

A new health care centre is opening in Halifax on Friday to help promote urban Indigenous wellness.

Eligibility for second COVID-19 booster shots has expanded in Nova Scotia.

The Western University Mustangs are mourning the sudden loss Thursday of a pillar of London football, Coach Jason “KJ” Kenemy.

A 25-year-old London man is facing multiple charges Thursday after allegedly brandishing a knife and threatening a woman inside an east London restaurant, according to police.

Dorchester residents will have to make a longer drive to pick up groceries.

Dr. Jane Goodall, founder of the Jane Goodall Institute and UN Messenger of Peace, officially planted the 10 millionth tree in Greater Sudbury's regreening efforts Thursday during a stop in the city.

Greater Sudbury is working on strategies to improve safety at 10 intersections in the city with higher-than-normal rates of collisions.

Bracebridge are investigating a shoplifting incident that occurred on Manitoba Street on June 29.

Environment Canada says the storm is located near Shantz and slowly moving east, and has already produced a tornado.

Three people were injured in a crash on Stoney Trail N.E. on Thursday morning.

A Calgary man faces 35 criminal code charges related to at least 18 break and enters and thefts at different Calgary businesses in April and May of this year.

A 19-year-old man is facing charges after a stabbing Wednesday night at a University of Waterloo residence.

Police are looking for a man who allegedly grabbed and sexually assaulted a woman in a Kitchener park.

The musical works of a Cambridge mother and daughter return to the stage this week.

With B.C.'s independent COVID-19 modelling group predicting that another wave of infections will sweep through the province and peak in August, weekly data released Thursday by the B.C. Centre for Disease Control shows the surge beginning.

In her work as a critical care veterinarian, Tiffany Jogodich treats the most severely sick pets. And sometimes, it’s a difficult burden to bear.

Forecasters are expecting wildfire danger to increase this month in British Columbia, despite the cool and soggy weather experienced across much of the province in June.

With a risk of severe thunderstorms and potential for tornado development, CTV News Edmonton's meteorologists Josh Classen and Cory Edel will keep you updated throughout the day here.

A worker is dead after an incident at the Suncor Base Plant Mine north of Fort McMurray, Alta., Thursday morning.

Two women have been charged in connection with a robbery at a pharmacy earlier this year.

A Windsor man found out he had won $100,000 when he went online to check his unclaimed tickets.

Essex County OPP say police have seized more than $61 million worth of illegal cannabis from two production sites in Kingsville.

The situation in Wheatley was almost back to normal following a gas explosion last summer, but monitoring systems just picked up another release of gas.

The 1500 block of Angus Street is clear after being shut down for several hours while the Regina Police Service SWAT team conducted an operation on Thursday morning.

A Regina driver was fined $1,400 after being stopped for using a cell phone while behind the wheel.

Crops are quickly progressing across Saskatchewan due to a combination of widespread and rainfall and relatively warm weather according the province’s crop report for June 28 to July 4.

On the final day of public hearings into Ottawa’s light rail transit, the commission saw new video that showed a train leaving Tremblay station moments before it derailed last September.

The Ottawa Senators acquired star forward Alex DeBrincat from the Chicago Blackhawks in a major trade for the franchise on Thursday.

An Ottawa woman is suing Sun Life, claiming she's entitled to long-term disability due to her depression and general anxiety disorder that don't allow her to work.

A plane that brought Ukrainian citizens to Saskatchewan is flying back to Poland full of supplies.

A Humboldt, Sask. woman is more than a half-million dollars richer after a VLT win.

After a two-year break due to the pandemic, there's a unique summer camp that is returning.

CTV News Programs
Local News
© 2022 All rights reserved. Use of this Website assumes acceptance of Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy


You might also like

Surviving 2nd wave of corona

Surviving The 2nd Wave of Corona

‘This too shall pass away’ this famous Persian adage seems to be defeating us again and again in the case of COVID-19. Despite every effort