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Can all the money in the world beat cancer?

Curing your child's illness at any cost is a promise that many parents can not make. Tracy Smith introduces us to a couple that is determined to give it all:

It seems that the McDowell family has it done. They have a beautiful house with a front yard large enough to have horses, on a secluded street on Pebble Beach, one of the most beautiful and beautiful places on the northern coast of California.

But what the McDowells really want to buy now is a cure for their son's cancer.

Smith asked: "What difference does money make in this fight?"


Rider and Victoria McDowell.

CBS News

"Well, unfortunately, it's all about money," said Rider McDowell.

The point is that money has not been a problem lately: Rider and Victoria, who got married in 1991, made a fortune along with home health products like Airborne Immunity Boost and Pine Brothers cough drops.

his true riches came in 2000, when Victoria gave birth to a son, Errol, and eight years later two twin boys, Mac and Piers.

For a time, it seemed that the McDowells had everything.

"We used to say:" Wow, we're too lucky. "This almost seems like the boom is going to fall on this," said Rider. .

And then, the boom fell.

Five years ago, Errol (now 18) was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, a rare brain cancer. Surgery and chemotherapy scared him away for a while; Now he is back.

  errol-mcdowell-cancer-promo.jpg "srcset =" https://cbsnews2.cbsistatic.com/hub/i/r/2018/04/15/7d029d21-132f-4c91-ba2b- f2c11acb9805 / resize / 220x / 913e679cc3c8baac6cc4333f6376dd15 / errol-mcdowell-cancer-promo.jpg 1x "/> </span><figcaption>
                                              CBS News
<p>  But Errol is optimistic. "I am very blessed," he said. "Every day, I think I have bad luck for cancer, I have to remind myself that I'm very lucky, because you know, I have the means to kill him." </p>
<p>  The keyword here is "medium." For example, when the McDowells heard about Anti-CD47, a promising new treatment that was not yet available, they were able to offer $ 10 million to anyone who could legally provide them, for Errol and any other child with brain cancer. [19659003] Smith asked: "Did someone get on you?" </p>
<p>  "Someone did it, and they were so kind that they did not want the $ 10 million," Rider said. </p>
<p>  The Anti-CD47 was not the silver bullet that the McDowells expected, but they are convinced that the Errol cure could still be only a few dollars away, and they could be right, says Dr. Nalin Gupta of Benioff from UCSF Children's Hospital. </p>
<p>  Smith asked: "Can a cancer be cured if we throw enough money?" </p>
<figure class=  dr-nalin-gupta.jpg "srcset =" https://cbsnews1.cbsistatic.com/hub/i/r/ 2018/04/15 / ed97b83d-1a29-47b1-8621-ccb4b1e76feb / resize / 220x / c6cf42bfac7a4e0b7c0b486f7ddbb796 / dr-nalin-gupta.jpg 1x "/> </span><figcaption>
                                              CBS News
<p>  "I think we can," replied Dr. Gupta. "And I think we can achieve that with some realistic expectations of what the objectives are" </p>
<p>  And right now, the McDowells goal is more money. They have assembled a team of doctors and researchers, and publicly asked Jeff Bezos, Amazon's billionaire founder, for a $ 250 million loan to fund a total effort. </p>
<p>  Rider said: "The $ 250 million would be used specifically for pediatric brain cancer research, to cure pediatric brain cancer, we could fix that with $ 250 million." </p>
<p>  Dr. Gupta said: "The $ 250 million answer many questions, and that's when I say that, ultimately, money gives you more options, but money is not a cure, it's a hope." </p>
<p>  The McDowells' hope has a new urgency: Since its relapse, doctors say that Errol's chances of long-term survival have been reduced from 85 percent to around ten. </p>
<p>  Smith asked: "Do you allow yourself to think that you could raise all this money and that it would not make a difference?" </p>
<p>  No, Victoria McDowell replied: "If we go there, we are lost. " </p>
<p> "And if we could change places with him, we would, you know?" added Rider. </p>
<p>  "So, do you still consider yourself lucky?" </p>
<p>  "Oh, yes," Rider said. </p>
<p>  "We still have our three children," said Victoria. "Errol is still here." </p>
<p>  <strong> <br /> For more information: </strong> </p>
<p>  <em> <br /> History produced by John D & # 39; Amelio. </em></p>
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