genetic experts from Hungary, Australia, France and Sweden, and the top genetics research institutes in the Gulf and the Middle East, will take part in the first GCC Genetic Conference in October, writes Mandeep Singh.
The event on October 4-7 at the Diplomat Radisson SAS Hotel is organised by the Bahrain National Hereditary Anaemia Society, in co-operation with the Ministry of Health and the Arabian Gulf University. "We've received confirmation from more than 200 delegates from Gulf and Middle East countries and the rest of the world," the Chairperson of the conference, Dr Shaikha Al Arayyed, said. "They include representatives from the Foundation for the Community Control of Hereditary Diseases in Budapest, the School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Sciences, Queensland, Australia, the Hospital Kobah Debr'aa in Paris and the World Alliance Organisation of Research and Families in Sweden."
She said that other well-known organisations sending representatives were the Genetic and Thalassaemia Centre at Al Wasel Hospital in Dubai, the King Saud University and the Department of Haematology of the Sultan Qaboos University in Muscat. The delegates include the Chairman of the medical genetics department of the King Faisal Specialist Hospital in Saudi Arabia, Dr Ahmed Al Teebi, J. Andoni Urtizberea from France and Zewar M. Mohga from Egypt."
The Secretary-General of the conference, Dr Farooq Al Zurba, said that 110 papers, including 75 oral presentations and around 50 poster presentations, had been confirmed. One of the highlights of the event will be a session for societies in the GCC countries that care for people with hereditary diseases in addition to sessions on reproductive, community, cycto and molecular genetics. Some other sessions will update patients and families on the latest information on the care and prevention of genetic disorders.
Dr Al Zurba said that the two workshops on the first and the second days would deal with pre-marital counselling and genetic birth defects, respectively. "These issues are on the minds of everyone and need to be discussed." He said that the coming decades were likely to see an enormous expansion in genomic research with an important potential for clinical application to benefit health care globally. "We need to prepare physicians and health planners so that they can adopt the new genetic and genomic techniques."
Last update on: 5-9-2003