Kevin and Karen Capel were parents to Christopher, their only child, who was diagnosed with Medulloblastoma in October 2006. After 21 months Christopher died in June 2008. Following Christopher’s death they started their charity Christopher’s Smile to provide catalyst funding for drug development projects at the Institute of Cancer Research in Sutton. The Capel’s were able to apply their career experience to their charity activities. Kevin Capel spent his working life in the airline industry, initially as an aircraft engineer and then various technical and project manager roles in information technology.
Kevin and Karen Capel changed their charity’s focus from drug development to the development of genomic diagnostics. They funded the development of the first Next Generation Sequencing Panel for paediatrics which is now available as a standard treatment for children as part of the Genomic Medicine Service. Their current focus is to see the implementation of a circulating tumour DNA (Liquid Biopsy) diagnostic for children diagnosed with cancer.
Kevin Capel has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate from London University for his charitable activities.
Kevin Capel is a Public and Patient Voice representative on the NHS England Genomics Clinical Reference Group.