Progeria trial offers little Enzo hope

Andrea Nicolas

FIRST ON 7: The parents of the only known Australian toddler with an extremely rare rapid aging condition hope a new overseas trial can help extend his life.

Enzo Cornejo enjoys playtime like any other toddler, but in August, just three weeks before his third birthday, his family was shocked to find out he suffers progeria syndrome.

He is believed to be the only person in Australia with the condition - one of just 300 cases in the world.

“My life changed in five seconds,” Enzo’s father Percy said of the diagnosis.

Enzo was tested after suffering rapid weight loss and skin problems.

“Thank God nothing has happened to him yet apart from him losing his hair and he has lost fat,” his mother Catherina Llontop said.

But Enzo’s bones are fragile, so his parents try to prevent any falls.

Enzo is not letting his condition get in the way of having fun. Photo: 7News.

Children with progeria syndrome often suffer from heart disease or strokes and many are not expected to live past the age of 14.

So far, there is no cure, but a new trial in the United States is offering hope.

“They help them to have a stronger heart,” Catherina said.

Enzo gives his dad Percy a high-five while his mum Catherina looks on. Photo: 7News.

If you would like to help, you can donate to Team Enzo on the One Possible webpage or you can find out more about the condition via the Progeria Research Foundation.