Russian group visit

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THIRTEEN Russian doctors at the heart of new life-saving screening to be rolled out across Russia have visited Sheffield Children’s Hospital to see how it works.

Russian geneticists visited the Sheffield hospital’s labs, where a pilot study to screen 430,000 babies for five rare diseases is currently taking place. The labs are a flagship testing base in the UK for rare diseases and the Russian party plans to learn from its scientists.

Dr Jim Bonham, clinical director at Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We are always delighted to share our experience of screening programs with colleagues in other countries.”

In England, all newborns are tested for five common conditions and in the new pilot screening led from Sheffield, a further five.

The Russian group heard lectures from scientists and medics about screening and genetics work carried out in Sheffield.

The pilot scheme to screen for extra diseases is being led by Sheffield Children’s NHS Foundation Trust and began in July 2012.