Miami (US)

Matteo Almeida

Matteo Almeida, 4, was born with spinal muscular atrophy, a rare genetic disease that leads to progressive muscle weakness. If left untreated, infants with the severest form of the illness often don’t live to see their second birthday. Matteo received a single treatment of a gene therapy, Zolgensma, when he was 27 days old as part of a clinical trial.

Matteo enjoys a laugh with his parents, Nicole and Derwin Almeida. (Photo)

Matteo enjoys a laugh with his parents, Nicole and Derwin Almeida.

Derwin Almeida romps in a backyard pool with his son Matteo, 4, who was born with spinal muscular atrophy. (Photo)

Derwin Almeida romps in a backyard pool with his son Matteo.