"Special screening programs for different genetic diseases, including chromosomal diseases and genetic abnormalities, are being implemented across the country which aim to prevent further spreading of these illnesses by 50 percent in a 5-year period," IRNA quoted Afshin Ostvar as saying.
Touching on the successful screening plan for thalassemia, he added that some 98 percent of couples and newborns are screened for this disease which has led to the decrease of thalassemia patients from 1200 to 15 individuals. However, he didn’t specified any further details about these data.
"The implementation of these programs initially required infrastructure including the transfer, localization and standardization of special diagnostic technologies in the country," he said, adding that Iran is now equipped with technologies to diagnose some common major genetic diseases.
He went on to say, "implementation of screening programs will also lead to 30-50 percent decrease in infant mortality rate (IMR)."