Global EditionASIA 中文双语Français
Home / World / Asia-Pacific

Joint health program launched in Thailand

By YANG WANLI in Bangkok | China Daily Global | Updated: 2024-05-20 09:12
Share - WeChat

A Thai minister has announced the launch of a new scientific research program in Thailand in conjunction with China's leading genome research organization, aiming to improve local people's life quality and reduce healthcare costs associated with late-stage diseases.

The research conducted by the National Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology of Thailand and the Bangkok Genomics Innovation Public Company, or BKGI, a Thai joint venture invested by one of China's leading genomics companies, BGI, will provide screening for high-risk populations of atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases.

Based on a new biomarker, namely the Trimethylamine N-oxide, or TMAO, the screening can offer risk prediction and intervention plans before symptoms appear.

The collaboration was announced during the 19th annual meeting of the International Conference on Genomics at the Faculty of Medicine of Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok over the weekend.

At the opening ceremony, Supamas Isarabhakdi, Thai minister of higher education, science, research and innovation, said the collaboration represents a vital exchange in biotechnology and medical technology, particularly in genetic testing, which aims to advance treatments for various diseases.

"Moreover, this partnership emphasizes the use of cutting-edge technology for the prevention and surveillance of diseases before symptoms arise," she said.

"This is particularly true for the risks of heart disease and cancer, where technology is leading to more detailed examinations and better prevention, in line with global health trends."

Over 20 years, BGI has launched several programs in Thailand covering a wide range of fields, including public health, gene research, precision medicine, advanced agriculture techniques and talent training to facilitate the development of life sciences in the country and benefit local people through technology.

Friendly ties

"This year marks the 49th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Thailand. The cooperation in the field of scientific education between the two countries has profound significance and impact on the 'China-Thailand family' relationship," said Isarabhakdi.

According to the ministry, projects supported by BGI have so far involved more than 100,000 participants in Thailand.

Since 2012, BGI has worked closely with the Thai Red Cross Society and introduced its noninvasive prenatal test at King Chulalongkorn Memorial Hospital. Nearly 100,000 noninvasive prenatal tests have been carried out, helping parents better understand the health of the fetus and the risk of certain genetic abnormalities.

In addition, BGI and Chulalongkorn University Faculty of Medicine signed a memorandum of understanding last year to jointly build a spatiotemporal omics research center, according to Cao Sujie, general manager of BGI Group Southeast Asia.

BGI was also in the first batch of a key project under the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation and has carried out genetic testing in five Lancang-Mekong countries, helping alleviate poverty caused by disease and improve the well-being of local people.

"In the future, we will expand our services in more countries in Southeast Asia, such as Indonesia and Vietnam, aiming to establish joint ventures and make our technology localized and benefit their people. Also, we will continue to invest more in personnel training, aiming to cultivate 100 specialists annually for the region," Cao said.

During the conference, Yang Huanming, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, called for joint efforts from scientists worldwide to work together to develop life sciences.

Most Viewed in 24 Hours
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349