The Centre for Arab Genomic Studies (CAGS) was established on 25 June 2003 for the purpose of alleviating human suffering from genetic diseases in the Arab World. Since then, the Centre, a division of Sheikh Hamdan Award for Medical Sciences, has dedicated itself to improving human health by characterizing and preventing genetic disorders in Arab countries based on recent advances in human genetics.


The Executive Board of CAGS is formed of a number of local scientists and it represents the governing body and the legal trustee of all activities of the Centre. The Council of CAGS includes a number of regional scientists and it facilitates the exchange of information on genetic disorders occurring in Arab countries. Countries represented in the Council include: Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, and the United Arab Emirates.


The Catalogue of Transmission Genetics in Arabs (CTGA) database, which is a continuously updated, open-access compendium of bibliographic material and observations on human gene variants and inherited, or heritable, genetic diseases in Arabs. As the database covers country after country in what is the largest scientific effort to define genetic disorders in Arab people, a clearer picture of the pattern of genetic disorders and effective strategies to prevent them is emerging.


For more information regarding CAGS visit the Website www.cags.org.ae
Via Email
Tel: +971 4 3986777
Fax: +971 4 3980999
Latest CAGS News
The Center for Arab Genomic Studies, a division of the Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences, has announced that registrations for the 8th PAHGC are now open, the conference will be held from 17th to 20th January 2020 at the Roda Bustan Hotel, Dubai.
Under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences, and in collaboration with the Institute of Myology, the Center for Arab Genomic Studies, a division of the Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences, will organize a practical teaching course in myology ‘Mena- Myo’, from 12th to 14th October 2019 at Roda Al Murooj hotel, in Dubai UAE
The UAE Rare Disease Society concluded its awareness campaign on rare diseases, which was organized in collaboration with the Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences. The campaign was organized across various regions in the country, including Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain, Abu Dhabi, Fujairah, Al Ain, Dibba Al Hasn, and Hatta throughout February 2019.
CAGS attended the 7th Kuwait International Genetic Conference. The conference was organized by Dr. Laila Bastaki, conference chairperson and director of the Kuwait Medical Genetic Centre, under the patronage of His Excellency the Minister of Health Sheikh Dr. Basel Al Sabah.
A number of recommended doctors and specialists in the field of clinical genetics participated in the Treatable Rare Disorders symposium, organized by the UAE Rare Diseases society in cooperation with the Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences.
Dubai-Feb2019: The Emirates Rare Diseases Society, in cooperation with the Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences, is organizing a symposium on treatable rare diseases from the 15th to 16th February, at the Lapita Hotel, Dubai Parks and Resorts.
In collaboration with the UAE Rare Disease Society, the Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences is organizing the Rare disease day competition for public and private schools in the UAE for the fourth consecutive year.
The Centre for Arab Genomic Studies, a division of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical sciences, published the 5th edition of Genetic Disorders in the Arab World (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia). The book provides an overview of medical genetic services in Saudi Arabia, as well as the major Mendelian disorders affecting the Saudi populatin. Moreover, the book highlights the importance of Islamic Bioethics in the context of medical genetics, as well as a Kingdom's profile in the Catalogue for Transmission Genetics in Arabs (CTGA) database, which the Centre maintains.
On the sidelines of the 10th Dubai International Conference for Medical Sciences, the newly reconstituted Executive Board of the Centre for Arab Genomic Studies (CAGS) held its first meeting.

CAGS Objectives

  • To raise public awareness on the importance of genetic diseases in the Arab World.
  • To identify disease-causing genes in the Arab population and develop a database of genetic diseases prevalent in the region.
  • To bring together diverse expertise and resources in the field of genetics and related areas in the Arab World and to promote common understanding between experts and facilitate multidisciplinary research in the field.
  • To prevent genetic diseases by providing comprehensive genetic services by translating research achievements into well-integrated patient treatment programs.
  • To develop a center for excellence in Dubai for genetic research and clinical services in the Arab World.
  • To address the ethical, legal and social issues that may arise from novel applications in human genetics.
  • To cooperate with other research and medical institutions to ensure global access to new findings and technical developments.

The Catalogue of Transmission Genetics in Arabs (CTGA) Database

One of the major activities undertaken by CAGS is the Catalogue of Transmission Genetics in Arabs (CTGA) Database, which is a continuously updated, open-access compendium of bibliographic material and observations on human gene variants and inherited, or heritable, genetic diseases in Arabs.  As the database covers country after country in what is the largest scientific effort to define genetic disorders in Arab people, a clearer picture of the pattern of genetic disorders and effective strategies to prevent them, is emerging.

Open Access Publications

CAGS regularly brings out open access publications, aimed at both the scientific community and the public.  The Centre's major publication activity has been its series of books on "Genetic Disorders in the Arab World".  This compilation is a consequence of CAGS' work on cataloguing Arab genetic disorders.  Thus far, four volumes of these books have been published. CAGS also publishes articles in scientific journals from time to time.  Aimed at the public, CAGS has also published three booklets on blood disorders, cancers, and disorders covered by neonatal screening.  These guides contain basic information on the disorders, their causes, and management, along with relevant epidemiological information about the Arab World. 

Research in Human Genetics

One of the major activities of CAGS is to conduct cutting edge research in human genetics.  Since its establishment, CAGS has conducted a number of studies including research on the underlying basis of:

  • Split Hand/Foot Malformation with Long Bone Deficiency (SHFLD)
  • Hidradenitis suppurativa 

The Pan Arab Human Genetics Conference

The Pan Arab Human Genetics Conference (PAHGC) is a biennial event organized by CAGS.  This conference series has been one of the major contributions of CAGS towards the dissemination of research outcomes on human genetics in the region, and it has become one of the most awaited events in the calendar of human genetics.  The first edition of the conference, held in 2006, was supported by the Human Genome Organization (HUGO), and attracted more than 500 delegates.  Attendance almost doubled beyond 900 delegates in the second and third editions of the conference.  The fourth edition of the Pan Arab Human Genetics Conference was another feather in the cap for CAGS since it was merged with the 15th Annual Human Genome Meeting (HGM) of the Human Genome Organization (HUGO) in Dubai in March 2011.  This was the first large-scale event on human genetics and genomics to be held in the Arab World, and was a tremendous success in terms of providing a platform for national and international leading geneticists to work out strategies and set the priorities for research aimed at combating the menace of genetic disorders in the region.

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