Qatar Foundation’s Annual Research Conference (ARC) has announced this month’s conference agenda will address Qatar’s Integrated Healthcare Grand Challenges.

The two-day event is hosted under the patronage of HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF). In support of the Foundation’s mission to build Qatar’s innovation and technology capacity while addressing immediate social needs in the community, the  conference will address critical issues pertaining to the country’s healthcare challenges, as well as social challenges and opportunities in Qatar and across the region.

Organised by Qatar Foundation Research & Development (QF R&D) at QF’s Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC), ARC’14 will take place on 18 and 19 November 2014. It follows on from the success of ARC’13, which was attended by more than 2,000 delegates and where many of Qatar’s Research Grand Challenges were unveiled.

As one of QF’s main pillars, QF R&D uses the Annual Research Conference as the flagship event in promoting QF’s vision of cultivating life-long learning and interest in science and research in Qatar.

This year’s conference will include premier researchers from Qatar Biomedical Research Institute (QBRI), a key QF R&D entity. Also participating will be international subject matter experts, who will discuss the latest breakthroughs and emerging challenges in national health priority areas, including diabetes, cancer, neurological diseases, genomics and personalised healthcare. Executive Director of QBRI, Dr Hilal A Lashuel, said:

ARC features the contributions of Qatari scientists to some of the latest advancements in healthcare and medicine. The conference also provides a unique opportunity to establish collaborations to build scientific capacity, and accelerate the improvement of healthcare in Qatar.’

The ARC biomedical and health programme was developed in partnership with QBRI, the flagship national institute that aims to transform healthcare in Qatar and throughout the region. QBRI’s plans include innovative preventative and diagnostic strategies for diseases and the translation of scientific discoveries into novel targeted therapies for the treatment of disease.

The conference’s principal healthcare presentation and panel discussion is ‘Breakthroughs in Biomedical Research.’ Presentations will include: ‘Neuroscience – Deep Brain Stimulation,’ by Professor Alim Louis Benabid, Joseph Fourier University and French Commission for Atomic Energy, France; ‘Diabetes,’ by Professor Randy Seeley, Cincinnati Diabetes and Obesity Centre, University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, USA; and ‘The Human Proteome,’ by Dr Akhilesh Pandey, McKusick-Nathans Institute of Genetic Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, USA.

On the second day of ARC’14, Dr Hsinchun Chen, Lead Program Director at the National Science Foundation (NSF) Smart and Connected Health Program from the USA, will hold a keynote lecture presentation on the topic of Integrated Healthcare. This will be followed by the Health Debate on the topic of ‘Personalised and Precision Medicine in the next 10 years: Hype, hope or clinical reality?’

The debate will be conducted in a classical ‘pro and con’ format and will discuss biomedical research that impacts people’s lives in the short, medium and long term through personalised and precision medicine. Dr Lashuel said:

What will be presented are not only research activities, but also a platform for pharma and economical discussion as a viable eco-system for valuable exchange. We will also be discussing what it will take to achieve our goal towards integrated healthcare, where it is easy to progress and where the challenges are at a molecular, individual and behavioural level to prevent or pre-empt disease progression in the areas of cancer, diabetes and neuro-genetics.’

ARC’14 will offer technical presentations and panel discussions in which some of the world’s leading researchers will share their perspectives on a variety of global research challenges. Abstract submissions will be chosen and presented by leading local scientists on topics that address the biomedical research agenda.

For more information or to register, visit the website of ARC’14.