Heart-stopping radio campaign raises awareness of plans to rewrite DNA to cure killer heart diseases

A series of radio ads were brought to an abrupt and heart-stopping halt on Monday 1 August by the sound of a flatlining heart monitor, as part of a new BHF campaign.

The BHF add:

We are using the unique ad to raise vital awareness of the need for research to stop sudden cardiac arrests striking suddenly and without warning, including in the young.

Listeners tuning in to Heart FM radio network and Global Original podcasts expecting the usual run of advertisements were surprised by the unexpected sound of a beeping heart monitor that eventually flatlines – the shocking but familiar long tone a monitor makes when alerting medical staff to a someone’s heartbeat stopping.

The heart monitor sound interrupted ads from well-known brands including, Sainsbury’s, On the Beach, heycar, Admiral Insurance, Dunelm, Cazoo and Check-a-Trade

Rewriting DNA to cure killer heart diseases

The audio takeover is designed to coincide with the announcement of our largest ever single research funding grant – £30m to CureHeart, a global collective of scientists from the UK, the US and Singapore who are pioneering revolutionary and ultra-precise gene therapy technologies that could silence or edit the faulty genes that cause inherited heart muscle diseases.

Every week in the UK, around 12 people under the age of 35 are a victim of sudden cardiac death, often caused by an inherited heart muscle disease, otherwise known as genetic cardiomyopathies. 

Now, through the campaign, we are calling for support for its largest ever research award to find cures for these deadly conditions.

The unexpected airwaves change was followed by a message detailing the impact of genetic cardiomyopathy and how the charity is funding research that aims to find a game-changing cure to stop the diseases from stopping hearts.

Dr Charmaine Griffiths, our Chief Executive, said: “The unexpected sound of a heart monitor that flatlines was designed to capture people’s attention and carries an incredibly important message. 

“Genetic cardiomyopathies tear families apart. They rob families of their loved ones in shocking and sudden ways, they stop people living full and healthy lives, and they create generations of families who live with the worry about their and their children’s future.

“Through CureHeart, we have the chance to stop this. But we can’t do it without the support of today’s radio listeners and people across the UK who fund our life saving work. With the public’s support we can turn what once seemed like science fiction into reality and give hope to hundreds of thousands of families worldwide.” 

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