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Kate Winslet funded life-saving treatment for cancer patient

Winslet enlisted the help of her 'Titanic' co-star Leonardo DiCaprio to save Gemma Nuttall, who previously refused drugs for an aggressive form of ovarian cancer because it would have terminated her pregnancy.

British actress Kate Winslet attends the world premiere of Titanic 3D in central London on 27 March 2012. Picture: AFP/CARL COURT

LONDON - Hollywood actress Kate Winslet helped to fund the life-saving treatment of a 29-year-old cancer patient.

The Academy Award-winning actress enlisted the help of her Titanic co-star Leonardo DiCaprio to save Gemma Nuttall, who previously refused drugs for an aggressive form of ovarian cancer because it would have terminated her pregnancy.

Nuttall, 29, gave birth to her daughter Penelope, and was subsequently told by doctors working for Britain's National Health Service (NHS) that there was nothing they could do to stop the spread of her cancer.

But Nuttall refused to give up hope, as she and her mother launched a £300,000 fundraising campaign after they were told that a so-called wonder clinic in Germany could save her.

Winslet heard about her story and auctioned off three 'Jack and Rose' date nights with DiCaprio, which they named after their Titanic characters.

The dates were auctioned off at DiCaprio's annual dinner party for his conservation foundation, and Winslet decided to use her split of the money to help Nuttall.

Appearing on ITV's This Morning, Winslet revealed why she decided to intervene, explaining: "I lost my own mother last year in May to ovarian cancer and at the time that we as a family were given a very poor prognosis for my mum after a four-year battle ... we decided to look elsewhere and we also stumbled across these places in Germany and simultaneously, I also came across this petition that had been set up on Change.org, campaigning to have immunotherapy available on the NHS. My heart sank. I then found her [Nuttall's] Go Fund Me page. I saw how much she needed to raise, at that point there was only £9,000. I thought, 'I can't have this happen.'"

The Hollywood actress then revealed the role DiCaprio played in raising the funds for Nuttall's treatment.

She said: "My own mum was very, very unwell and I just thought my mum would be incredibly proud of us if I could do this for another young mum. It was just amazing.

"I started putting word out there. I became determined to raise this money. We got close to £200,000 and at that point I thought, 'It's time to call my friend Leo'. He said, 'We will auction off a dinner with Jack and Rose. And we raised $1.3 million. We did three [dinners]. Half would go to his foundation."

Meanwhile, a visibly emotional Nuttall thanked Winslet, 42, for her help during a phone conversation on the programme.

She admitted that without the actress' help, she might not be alive today.

Nuttall shared: "I can't thank Kate enough. Without her donations, and the public's, my story would be very different."

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