Discovery Channel’s new series, First In Human, will follow four patients plagued with serious illnesses as they arrive at the National Institute of Health to undergo experimental treatments that will hopefully cure them.
The docuseries will be narrated by Emmy and Golden Globe winner Jim Parsons, who recently spoke about the show on Jimmy Kimmel Live. “It’s the most beautiful, moving thing in the world and it’s such important work,” the actor told Kimmel.
One of the patients who will be featured on the show is Deidra Williams, who was gravely ill from sickle-cell ailment when she arrived at Building 10 of the National Institute of Health campus.
Read on to learn more about Deidra Williams.
1. She Had Sickle Cell Anemia
Deidra suffered from sickle cell anemia, which is a red blood cell disorder. The condition occurs when there aren’t enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body. The disorder put Deidra in constant pain and made it difficult for her to to walk from her bed to the bathroom.
2. She Is Now Free of the Disease After a Stem Cell Transplant
In November 2015, Deidra underwent a stem cell transplant. She is now free of the disease, and, according to tdtnews.com, she has not had a sickle cell crisis since the procedure occurred.
3. Her Sister Provided the Stem Cells
Deidra’s sister, Tanisha, was the one who provided the stem cells. The sisters were a 100% match, according to tdtnews.com.
According to her Facebook, Deidra works a member advisor at the Karis Group.
4. She Has Teenage Children
Hematologist Dr. John Tisdale worked closely with Williams during the treatment. Broadway World quotes him as saying to Deidra, “I thought I could do more as a research doctor…if this works… then people read about it and then they use the same kind of treatment wherever they are. And the reach is farther than just you.”
According to tdt.com, Deidra has teenage children. She tells the outlet, “They have only known me as being sick,” she said. “We’re making new memories.”
5. Her Mother Is a Nursing Instructor at Temple College
Deidra’s mother, Ethel, is a vocational nursing instructor at Temple College. She tells tdtnews.com that her daughter’s experience– which will be chronicled on Discovery’s series– is a valuable teaching moment. “They are part of nursing history,” she tells the outlet of her students. Ethel studied at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Texas.
First In Human is produced by McGee Media for Discovery and directed by John Hoffman. The show was filmed at the National Institute of Health’s Clinical Center, also known as Building 10.