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Experts urge efforts to promote precision medicine

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-07-15 10:11

BEIJING -- Experts have called for increased efforts in developing precision medicine to fight China's most prevalent diseases.

The incidence rate of a disease varies from country to country.

For example, liver diseases are common in China, but their incidence rates are relatively low in America, said Yan Hai, professor of Neuro-Oncology at the School of Medicine at Duke University.

In 2015, an average of 7,500 people died of cancer in China each day, with lung, gastric and liver cancers topping the incidence rates, according to a report published in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

Therefore, China is in dire need of precision medicine due to its high incidence of these types of cancers, said Yan at a technology exhibition jointly held by authorities including the Ministry of Science and Technology.

To further develop precision medicine, more should be done in improving the innovation capabilities and coordination, as well as putting in place laws on new medical technologies, said Zhan Qimin, head of Peking University's Health Science Center.

By using genetic testing, molecular imaging, and other medical technologies, precision medicine analyzes a patient's genetic make-up, medical history and lifestyle, before offering customized prevention and treatment for diseases such as cancer.

China has listed genomics as a key strategic field in its 13th five-year plan (2016-2020) for the country's economic and social development.

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