Newcastle toddler undergoes pioneering brain surgery

A toddler from Newcastle has become one of the youngest in the world to have a pioneering brain operation that could help others living with a rare genetic disease.

2-year-old Jessica Rich has Batten Disease, a life limiting condition for which there is currently no known cure.

Jessica travelled to Germany to undergo a procedure to put an implant in her brain. She is currently in Hamburg, recovering from the surgery.

Back in Newcastle, Jessica's mother Gail is looking after older sister Nicole, who also has Batten Disease. It's a rare genetic disease which causes loss of ability to walk, talk, eat and see. There is currently no cure.

Jessica's operation will slow down but not stop the disease. She is flying home tomorrow with her dad and brother.

The Batten Disease Family Association says the efforts and sacrifices of Gail and her family will benefit "the whole Batten community".