Boo's Story

Boo Post Surgery
Boo a week after his second operation.

A terminal disease diagnosis devastates you, regardless of whether the diagnosis is personal, that of a family member, a friend, or a beloved pet. In the fall of 2009, I learned that my seven year old black Labrador Retriever, Boo Radley, had a brain tumor, which would turn out to be a glioblastoma multiforme, or GBM.

Searching the Internet for information about canine brain tumors, I was surprised to learn that dogs develop the same types of brain tumors as humans, and therefore make excellent preclinical models for testing brain tumor treatments prior to employing them on humans. Several such trials were then underway around the country.

Thus began a seven month, 12,000 mile odyssey as Boo was treated in all three canine brain tumor clinical trials in existence at that time, earning him a very unique spot in both veterinary and human medical history. We were honored to work with some of the finest medical researchers in the U.S., who are dedicated to finding a cure for this deadly disease.

Two of the clinical trials in which Boo was enrolled have now been approved for human trials, thus proving that testing new therapies on dogs benefits both species. While Boo's story has no happy ending, there is a hopeful beginning. The Boo Radley Foundation was incorporated in the Commonwealth of Virginia on June 23, 2011 and is a tax exempt charitable foundation under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

The Foundation's mission supports the expansion of canine brain tumor clinical trials as a way to expedite treatment options for humans and dogs, as well as supporting research into other diseases common to humans and dogs.

The Boo Radley Foundation's motto is "Healing Man and Man's Best Friend." I hope that you will join us in turning tragedy into triumph.

Ken Johnson
Founder, The Boo Radley Foundation