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Rare Disease Day 2015


Images from Rare Disease Day

This special day draws attention to rare diseases and the millions of people who are affected by them, and highlights the need for more research and funding to help sufferers and their families.  The theme for 2015 was 'Living with a rare disease - day-by-day, hand-in-hand.'

An exhibition, lectures, hands-on workshops and other activities showcased rare disease research and care, and introduced attendees to freely available resources related to rare disease.


Our Rare Disease Day event supported the Women Inspire campaign, hosting three excellent speakers: Rosalind Smyth, Linda Popplewell and Miriam González Durántez. Also pictured Professor George Dickson (co-organiser), RDD volunteers in red shirts, Dr Rafael Yáñez (organiser) and Professor Paul Hogg (Vice-Principal for Research and Dean of Science).


AKU Society

Ataxia-Telangiectasia Society

Ashford and St Peter's Hospitals NHS

The Fragile X Society

Brittle Bone Society


Findacure: the Fundamental Diseases Partnership

Genetics Disorders UK

Ichthyosis Support Group

Muscular Dystrophy Campaign

Royal Holloway Department of History – Barbara Zipser

Society of Biology

The British Society for Gene and Cell Therapy

The Jennifer Trust for Spinal Muscular Atrophy

The SMA Trust

Tuberous Sclerosis Association



2015 full programme - download here  (PDF)

Watch the Livestream from the event here 

About Rare Diseases

In Europe, a rare disease is defined as one with an incidence of less than 1 in 2,000 people. While each of them is rare, there are more than 7,000 rare diseases, which together affect 24 million (six per cent) people in Europe and take 20 per cent of all health care costs. Improving the care and developing diagnostics and treatments for people with rare diseases are now international priorities. 

Royal Holloway is a leading institution in the development of novel therapies for rare diseases, including Spinal muscular atrophy, Spinal injury, Severe combined immunodeficiency (referred to as ‘child in a bubble’ disease) and Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Our scientists in the School of Biological Sciences are at the forefront in developing innovative techniques in gene and cell therapy. Much of this research is carried out in the labs of our RDD organiser  Dr Rafael Yáñez and co-organiser Professor George Dickson.

 Rare disease day logo




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