The World Islamic Economic Forum Foundation (WIEF) through its WIEF Education Trust (WET) organised a Global Discourse on Regenerative Medicine to enhance understanding and build bridges between various factions of our global community on current scientific and technological issues of importance to the Muslim World.
Regenerative medicine represents a new paradigm in human health, with the potential to resolve unmet medical needs by addressing the underlying causes of disease. It translates fundamental knowledge in biology, chemistry and physics into materials, devices, systems and a variety of therapeutic strategies which augment, repair, replace or regenerate organs and tissues. There are over 60,000 stem cell transplants annually performed worldwide for the treatment of oncology and blood-based disorders. It was estimated that in 2012, cell therapy products distributed by bio-therapeutic companies generated over $900 million with 160,000 patients receiving treatments.
The 6th WIEF-UiTM Global Discourse discussed, debated and deliberated on the importance and potential of regenerative medicine to the future of healthcare industry, success factors to stakeholders’ participation in the industry and opportunities in these transformative technologies.
The Hon. Tun Musa Hitam, Chairman of the WIEF Foundation, said at the opening session, “It is our sincere hope that through the integration of expertise from different parts of the world and stronger international academic collaboration, this Global Discourse would help to promote greater understanding of Regenerative Medicine for the benefit of humanity. We also hope that whatever new ideas generated at the Discourse would be helpful in furthering education for action and in creating the right climate for such ideas to continue to bloomin the years ahead.”
“I believe, regenerative medicine is one of the most promising fields of biomedical research. By mobilising the human body’s self-healing powers, it offers hope for many patients with diseases or injuries that were previously difficult or even impossible to treat. Moreover, we expect regenerative medicine to provide new ways of compensating for deteriorating organ function in age-related diseases. This is particularly important against the backdrop of rapid demographic change in the world and the scarcity of donor organs.” said Tan Sri Dr Wan Mohd Zahid bin Mohd Noordin, Chairman of WIEF Education Trust and Chairman of UiTM.
Leading the academia-industrial discourse is, Prof. Dr Yoshiki Sawa, Professor and Chief, Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine,Japan, who made a special presentation on his successful clinical trials on treatment of failing hearts using surgical approaches including stem cell transplantation, artificial organs, gene therapy and myocardial regeneration therapy.
Amongst the other experts who took part in the Global Discourse were:
- Prof. Christopher O’Neill
Head, Centre for Developmental and Regenerative Medicine, Kolling Institute of Medical Research, University of Sydney, Commonwealth of Australia
- Prof. Dr Salim Aziz
Professor, Clinical, Cardiovascular Surgery, George Washington University, Washington DC, United States of America
- Prof. Dr Nafeeza Mohd Ismail
Dean, Faculty of Medicine, MARA University of Technology (UiTM), Malaysia
- Prof. Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr Haji Mohd Ismail bin Merican
Pro-Chancellor and Chairman, MAHSA University & Consultant Physician & Hepatologist, Prince Court Medical Centre, Malaysia
About the World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) Foundation
The WIEF Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation based in Kuala Lumpur, organises the annual World Islamic Economic Forum, a world-class business platform showcasing business opportunities in the Muslim world. The Foundation also runs programmes under the WIEF Businesswomen Network (WBN), WIEF Young Leaders Network (WYN) and the WIEF Education Trust (WET) and the WIEF Roundtable Series, aimed at strengthening people partnership and knowledge exchange between Muslim and non-Muslim communities across the globe. Some of the Foundation’s initiatives include the roundtable discussions, leadership programmes, knowledge transfer and skill development workshops, business networking forums, internship and scholarship programmes, the Young Fellows Programme and the Marketplace of Creative Arts Festival (MOCAfest). For more information on the WIEF Foundation, please visit www.wief.org
About WIEF-UiTM Global Discourse Series
The WIEF-UiTM Global Discourse is a collaborative programme between the WIEF Foundation and the University Teknologi MARA (UiTM). It is aimed at bringing to Universities in Malaysia and their communities, discussions and lectures on current scientific and technological issues of importance to the Muslim World. The purpose is to enhance understanding and build bridges between various factions of our global community by promoting international academic collaborations.
About WIEF-UiTM International Centre
WIEF-UiTM International Centre, the product of the collaboration between the WIEF Foundation and the MARA University of Technology (UiTM), was officially launched on 28 May 2007 by the then Prime Minister of Malaysia, the Hon. Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, during the 3rd World Islamic Economic Forum held in Kuala Lumpur on 27-29 May 2007.
The idea of the Centre came as a response to the urgent need of consolidating and strengthening educational collaboration in the Muslim World. Under the auspices of the WIEF, the Centre seeks to bring together distinguished scholars, business leaders, industry practitioners and academics to strategically plan for initiatives that will promote knowledge advancement, competencies, upgrading and capacity-building among Muslim nations and communities.
About MARA University of Technology (UiTM)
MARA University of Technology (UiTM) was established in 1956 to initially provide low level skills training to the indigenous community, who are predominantly rural Muslim, to partake in the commercial activities of post-independence Malaya. UiTM is now Malaysia’s largest university that provides a multitude of academic and professional programmes in different disciplines that encompasses the broad spectrum of science and technology, the social sciences as well as business and management.
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