Rob Burrow: £50m funding for MND research could be 'game changer'

Rob Burrows was diagnosed with MND in December 2019 Credit: PA

Leeds Rhinos legend Rob Burrow says new funding for research into Motor Neurone Disease (MND) could be a 'game changer' in the fight against the condition.

The government's announced it's supporting the United To End MND Campaign and committing to invest £50 million over five years in research.

The aim of the campaign was to find the quickest and most efficient way to accelerate the current promising progress that scientists are making towards the first-ever meaningful treatments for this brutal condition.

Burrow was diagnosed with MND in December 2019 and has become a high profile figure in the MND community ever since to raise money and awareness for care and research for those impacted by the disease. 

Burrow said: “This is fantastic news for the MND community and I would like to thank the hundreds of thousands of people who have supported this campaign and made sure that the Government has finally come to the right decision.

"I have been honoured to meet so many wonderful people who have dedicated their lives to make sure that funding is where it should be for MND research and the hope now is that this is a game changer.

"This is great news for research but we must also continue to support care for those living with MND now and that is why I am also so proud to support the fundraising effort for the new MND Care Centre here in Leeds; research and care are so important for anyone living with MND.”

Rob's father told ITV News he was 'stunned' to hear the news of the funding.

Geoff Burrow said: "I'm shocked but nicely shocked. We didn't expect it after the budget and it's great. This should help it as it hasn't been funded before like a lot of charities and illnesses but now it is going to be so it's a win win."

Kevin Sinfield will set off on his latest fundraising challenge – ‘The Extra Mile Challenge’ - next Monday when he aims to run 101 miles in 24 hours from Leicester to Leeds.

Sinfield is aiming to raise £100,000 that will be split between the MND Association and the Leeds Hospital’s Charity appeal to build a MND Care Centre in Leeds.

He said: “We have always known that research is key to finding a long term cure for MND and this news from the Government is a huge boost to that. 

 “But there are families living with MND every day of the week in this country and they need care and support right now. I am delighted that the money raised from The Extra Mile will directly help people across England and Wales through the MND Association and in Leeds when we realise the ambition of opening the Rob Burrow MND Care Centre. I am inspired by Rob and his family every day but also everyone in the MND community who, together, have already achieved incredible things and this is just the start.”