British Heart Foundation have been announced as Charity of the Year for the 2022 TCS (Tata Consultancy Services) London Marathon.
Through the partnership, they’re aiming to help heal hearts across the UK by raising £3 million for research into regenerative medicine that could one day find a cure for heart failure.
Nearly a million people in the UK are living with heart failure. The money raised by runners will help the BHF fund cutting-edge research into regenerative medicine that could lead to new treatments within a generation.
Heart failure can be caused by many different conditions and occurs when a person’s heart is unable to pump blood around their body efficiently due to changes to the muscle of the heart. It’s often a long-term consequence of damage caused by a heart attack, which means that as heart attack survival rates have improved, more people have gone on to develop life-limiting heart failure.
In its severest form, heart failure has a survival rate that’s worse than many cancers and can be so debilitating that everyday tasks like climbing a flight of stairs become a struggle.
Turbo charging pioneering research
Dr Charmaine Griffiths, our Chief Executive, said: “We’re thrilled to be the 2022 TCS London Marathon Charity of the Year. The money raised will turbo charge pioneering research into regenerative medicine and give hope to hundreds of thousands of people living with incurable heart failure right now.
“Today we’re urging people to join Team BHF by taking on the once-in-a-lifetime challenge of the iconic London Marathon. Every single step our runners take will help power life saving science with the potential to heal damaged hearts. The race really is on, and you could be part of it.”
The London Marathon has raised over a billion pounds for charities since it was founded in 1981.
Hugh Brasher, Event Director of the TCS London Marathon, said: “We are delighted to welcome the British Heart Foundation as the Charity of the Year for the 2022 TCS London Marathon and look forward to working with them to support participants to raise as much money as possible on Sunday 2 October 2022 to help fund this crucial research into finding a cure for heart failure.”
The holy grail of heart research
Previously described as the ‘the Holy Grail’ of heart research, regenerative medicine is a pioneering field that aims to find ways to regrow, repair and replace damaged heart muscle and blood vessels.
Professor Paul Riley, BHF Professor of Regenerative Medicine at our Centre of Regenerative Medicine in Oxford, said: “Heart failure is a debilitating condition, dramatically changing the lives of those affected. BHF-funded research has helped create treatments to give people with heart failure longer, healthier lives, but there is no cure. Regenerative medicine offers that hope.
“The money raised will enable researchers to push the boundaries of medicine by regenerating heart muscle and growing new blood vessels in the lab. Unlocking these secrets could help heal hearts and transform the prognosis for people living with debilitating heart failure.”