The Abu Dhabi Department of Health (DoH) in the UAE has made a declaration of collaboration with Mass General Brigham’s (MGB) International Center for Genetic Disease (iCGD) to advance life sciences.

The deal is aimed at advancing life sciences across three strategic areas: clinical and translational research, capacity building and technology transfer, and in the area of commercialisation.

Benefiting from Abu Dhabi’s improved genomics capabilities, the deal seeks to expand research into genomic medicine and genetic diseases to provide patients in the UAE and beyond with improved access to new tools and treatments.

Along with iCGD and MGB, DOH will facilitate the clinical research and treatment associated with prioritised global genetic diseases in the fields of rare diseases, oncology, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases and neurology.

The research will focus on the Emirati Genome Programme’s genome sequencing data and on carrying out translational studies to develop new therapies, including gene therapies.

The signatories will also explore options to set up joint laboratories and genetic screening programmes in Abu Dhabi to discover genomic tools that address global health issues and needs.

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They expect to create education and capacity-building efforts in clinical genomic medicine and molecular genomic medicine to enhance healthcare outcomes for people across the globe.

DoH Research and Innovation Center executive director Dr Asma Ibrahim Al Mannaei stated: “Our collaboration with iCGD reaffirms our deep commitment to improving people’s lives in the UAE and beyond.

“Under the directives of our wise leadership, Abu Dhabi remains focused on addressing global healthcare challenges through valuable partnerships that unify efforts and magnify impact for the benefit of the global community.

“By leveraging the Emirates’ advanced infrastructure, we seek to boost clinical research and advance gene therapy to improve healthcare outcomes today and for generations to come.”