Clinical Genetics and Molecular Services in Developing Countries Workshop


History and Background


The Human Genome Project has led to the discovery of many potential genetic and genomic markers of disease susceptibility, diagnosis, prognosis and follow-up. Validation and integration of these new molecular tools, including the new generation of nucleic acid analysis methods, into clinical practice pose many significant challenges to health care systems that need to be addressed through evidence-based approaches.

Moreover, in 2002, the WHO report on Genomics and World Health expressed concern that the lack of medical genetic services in developing nations may add to the gross health care disparity that already exists between them and industrialized countries. The situation of standard clinical, specialized medical genetics, and supporting laboratory diagnostic (including molecular and cytogenetic) services in several developing countries around the world will be presented. Issues addressed may include historical, cultural and ethnic aspects of research and care, the frequency of specific disorders, genes and genetic variants associated with inherited diseases, and relevant epidemiological data from different countries. As appropriate, the discussion may also include social, economic, religious, educational and legal issues as they relate to the future development of genetic services.