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Arab Genomic Studies
Importance of research stressed
14 Dec 2004

Arab populations suffer from no less than 900 genetic disorders with 35 per cent of those disorders having no known molecular causes, revealed Hamad Abdul Rahman Al Midfa, Minister of Health, while stressing the importance of research.

Al Midfa made these remarks last night at the third awards presentation ceremony of the Shaikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences held at the Convention Centre of the Dubai World Centre. The ceremony was attended by Shaikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance and Industry, and other Shaikhs and dignitaries. “Two years ago, Shaikh Hamdan, through his kind initiative, called upon researchers to intensify their research and studies in genetic fields. As a result, the Centre for Arab Genomic Studies affiliated to the Award was established. The key stage of the Centre’s plan was to create database on hereditary diseases and cases in the UAE,” said Al Midfa.

It has been found out that there are more than 200 genetic disorders and congenital anomalies in the UAE. Some of these disorders are found among Arab expatriate communities and were not identified in their respective countries. Moreover, congenital anomalies and deformities are responsible for 40.3 per cent of the child mortality rate in the UAE which has dropped to 6.56 / 1000 in year 2000, said Al Midfa...