Skip to main content
St. Jude patient Thiago smiling on his bed.

Thiago loves dancing to the music in his life

Make a Donation


One of Thiago's favorite things is music, especially when it comes from his dad’s djembe, a percussion instrument.

Video of St. Jude patient Thiago dancing to his dad's music.

Months before the sweeping quarantines imposed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, baby Thiago needed isolation and extra-special care of his own.

St. Jude patient Thiago smiling while in a high chair.

He was born in October 2019 with a genetic disorder known as X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency – often called bubble boy disease. That illness rendered his body unable to produce the B-cells, T-cells and natural-killer cells that form the framework of the immune system.

The simplest of infections could have proved fatal for the little boy.

St. Jude patient Thiago with a hat in the bathtub.

But after arriving at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital when he was about two months old, Thiago underwent a bold new gene therapy to reverse the mutation causing the disorder.


Families, like Thiago's, will never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food.

St. Jude patient Thiago smiling with his parents.

The therapy, employing a modified virus to deliver and insert a corrected copy of the gene into stem cells, spurred the establishment of his immune system.

St. Jude patient Thiago walking.

Now back in his native Puerto Rico, the year-old boy is doing well, playing with his mother Marelis and dancing to the beats played by his percussionist father, Steven.


Your donation helps give kids like Thiago the chance to grow up.

Make a Donation


Meet more patients