Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (or ALS) has hit a lot of sports figures, from Lou Gehrig to Steve Gleason to O.J. Brigance to Dwight Clark. The latest one impacted is Calgary Flames’ assistant general manager Chris Snow. Chris’ wife Kelsie wrote a post about that on the Flames’ website Wednesday, which mentioned that this is a disease that’s hit Snow’s family hard, but that he’s in a drug trial that seems to be showing promise so far:
Dear Hockey Family,
I’m here to share news we prayed so hard we’d never have.
Chris has been diagnosed with ALS.
…In the same breath as the doctor telling us that Chris was in the early stages of ALS, he also gave us hope. The next step, he said, was to enroll Chris in a clinical trial for the most encouraging ALS gene therapy treatment to come along. The drug targets a specific genetic mutation that has devastated Chris’ family. Just over one year ago Chris’ dad passed away from ALS. We have also lost both of Chris’ paternal uncles and his 28-year-old cousin to this disease.
In the simplest terms, this drug works by silencing the effects of the mutated gene, and in Miami we could see how hopeful the doctor felt. So hopeful that when I asked if he believes this drug could stop progression entirely, he said, “We don’t know, but it’s not outside the realm of possibility.”
…Chris has been in the trial for several months, and while we do not know whether he is on the actual drug or a placebo, the disease since that initial dose does not seem to have progressed. His right hand and forearm remain the only affected areas of his otherwise strong and healthy body.
It’s certainly unfortunate to hear this news for Snow, but it’s promising that his disease hasn’t progressed since his diagnosis. And the NHL community sent him a lot of support Wednesday.
— Wes Gilbertson (@WesGilbertson) December 18, 2019
Thoughts and best wishes to Flames assist GM Chris Snow and his family as he embarks on his battle with ALS. https://t.co/JSvqUosWJV
— Eric Francis (@EricFrancis) December 19, 2019
Thoughts and prayers to the Snow family. Sending positive thoughts your way. Be the first to beat this Chris.
— Glenn Campbell (@CTVGCampbell) December 18, 2019
Here’s wishing Snow and his family all the best during this time.