The Department of Health (DoH) has announced that new sample collection sites have been launched as part of the Emirati Genome Program’s expansion in Abu Dhabi.
Sample collection sites participating in the Emirati Genome Program now include the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), Biogenix Labs in Masdar City, Al Towayya in Al Ain, Al Ain Convention Center and CurePlus Medical Centre, Al Ain. This is in addition to NMC Healthcare’s network in Abu Dhabi, which includes NMC Royal Hospital in Khalifa City, Bareen International Hospital, NMC Specialty Hospital, Al Ain, NMC Royal Medical Center- Abu Dhabi and NMC Royal Women’s Hospital.
Citizens can also visit Burjeel Hospital’s network of medical facilities in Abu Dhabi, which include Burjeel Medical City in Mohamed Bin Zayed City, Burjeel Oasis Medical Center in Madinat Zayed, Burjeel Medical Centre in Deerfields Mall, Burjeel Medical Center at Al Shamkha and Burjeel Royal Hospital, Al Ain.
All Emirati citizens are invited to take part by visiting one of the program’s sample collection sites and providing a single blood sample. A team will be available at all sample collection sites to guide participants through the process.
The program operates in line with the highest ethical and governance standards and ensures the anonymity of all participants and the date of their blood donation.
Using the samples provided, the Emirati Genome Program will sequence the complete genome of as many citizens as possible to support better prediction, prevention, and treatment of genetic and chronic illnesses for current and future generations. The data will be used to develop healthcare strategies to address the population’s specific needs now and in the future, and support the advancement of preventive medicine in the UAE.
The significance of this historic research project means that every participant is helping to protect their own health, as well as that of their loved ones and their community.
Commenting on the occasion, Dr. Asmaa Al Mannaei, Executive Director of Research and Innovation Center at the Department of Health, Abu Dhabi said, “The UAE is an ambitious country, and over the past five decades, we have witnessed astonishing progress in building a nation that is among the safest, most prosperous, and technologically advanced in the world.”
Dr. Al Mannai added, “It is with this passion and determination and ground-breaking initiatives such as the Emirati Genome Program, that we embark on one of the largest genomic initiatives ever undertaken, the results of which will advance medical research to the benefit of our citizens of all ages.”
Dr. Walid Zaher, Chief Research Officer at G42 Healthcare, said: “The Emirati Genome Program uses the most advanced sequencing technologies to propose preventive healthcare services and solutions against genetic illnesses. The goal of the Emirati Genome Program is ultimately to provide a more effective and more personalized healthcare system that is tailored to individual Emirati citizens, significantly improving disease prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.”
G42 Healthcare will utilize its recently launched Omics Centre of Excellence, the largest and most technologically advanced omics facility in the region, to analyze data anonymously, generate a comprehensive genomic map, and potentially find breakthrough insights to drive large-scale scientific discovery.
For more information and details on the Emirati Genome Program, including information on how to participate, visit www.emiratigenomeprogram.ae or dial 800 UAE GENOME.