Patients with cystic fibrosis living longer because of Pipeline to a Cure

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - Scott Johnson has defied the odds.

He was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when he was 3 years old at a time when most patients died of disease in their teens. His life expectancy was 5.

Today, Johnson, 45, is thriving. He had a double-lung transplant in 2001.

He's participated in several Ironman distance triathlons.

Johnson joined us on WECT News First at Four Friday to talk about living with cystic fibrosis and an upcoming fundraiser to help those with the condition.

Cystic fibrosis is a genetic, life-threatening disease that causes mucus to build up and clog some

of the organs in the body, particularly the lungs.

There is no cure for cystic fibrosis but patients are living longer lives thanks to developments in treating the condition.

Pipeline to a Cure was created following the discovery by Australian researchers that children with cystic fibrosis who surfed had significantly healthier lungs.

The reason: inhaling saltwater mist rehydrates the lining of the lungs, which allows individuals with cystic fibrosis to more easily eliminate life-threatening, bacteria-contaminated mucus.

Researchers developed a hypertonic saline solution to treat CF, which was founded in partnership with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Pipeline to a Cure continues to work to advance treatments and fund research for a cure.

A fundraiser for the group will be held in Wilmington, on Saturday, July 29 at 6:00 p.m. at the Wilmington Convention Center,

For tickets and more information, click here.

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