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1.  China launched a pilot project to improve its rare disease healthcare levels 
China is facing the great challenge of serving the world’s largest rare disease population. It is necessary to develop a specific medical plan to increase the levels of optimal prevention, diagnosis and treatment of rare diseases under the existing clinical service structures in China. In 2013, China launched its first pilot project focused on 20 representative rare diseases. A national network including approximately 100 provincial or municipal medical centers has been established to enable collaboration on rare diseases across China. The main objectives for this project are to develop and apply medical guidelines and clinical pathways for rare diseases, to establish a rare disease patient registry and data repository system, and to promote molecular testing for rare genetic disorders. This project also emphasizes building close links among the collaborative network, clinicians on the frontlines in basic medical services institutions and rare disease patient organizations. Primarily, this project expects to develop an actionable medical services plan to increase the delivery of quality healthcare for individuals and families living with rare diseases in China within five years.
doi:10.1186/1750-1172-9-14
PMCID: PMC3937133  PMID: 24468030
2.  A systematic review of genetic skeletal disorders reported in Chinese biomedical journals between 1978 and 2012 
Little information is available on the prevalence, geographic distribution and mutation spectrum of genetic skeletal disorders (GSDs) in China. This study systematically reviewed GSDs as defined in “Nosology and Classification of genetic skeletal disorders (2010 version)” using Chinese biomedical literature published over the past 34 years from 1978 to 2012. In total, 16,099 GSDs have been reported. The most frequently reported disorders were Marfan syndrome, osteogenesis imperfecta, fibrous dysplasia, mucopolysaccharidosis, multiple cartilaginous exostoses, neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), osteopetrosis, achondroplasia, enchondromatosis (Ollier), and osteopoikilosis, accounting for 76.5% (12,312 cases) of the total cases. Five groups (group 8, 12, 14, 18, 21) defined by “Nosology and Classification of genetic skeletal disorders” have not been reported in the Chinese biomedical literature. Gene mutation testing was performed in only a minor portion of the 16,099 cases of GSDs (187 cases, 1.16%). In total, 37 genes for 41 different GSDs were reported in Chinese biomedical literature, including 43 novel mutations. This review revealed a significant imbalance in rare disease identification in terms of geographic regions and hospital levels, suggesting the need to create a national multi-level network to meet the specific challenge of care for rare diseases in China.
doi:10.1186/1750-1172-7-55
PMCID: PMC3492206  PMID: 22913777
Rare diseases; Genetic skeletal diseases; China; Bibliographic study

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