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OBJECTIVE: To identify the mutations underlying a number of inborn errors of metabolism (IEM) disorders among United Arab Emirates (UAE) residents. METHODS: Molecular diagnostic and bioinformatics tools were used to identify the causative mutations of IEM disorders from multi-ethnic patients residing in UAE. The study was conducted in Al-Ain, UAE, between April 2009 and September 2010. This is a case series retrospective study where patients attending the metabolic clinic at Tawam Hospital were recruited. Thirty patients and 26 parents were included. RESULTS: We present evidence in the UAE of 7 new mutations and 19 mutations that have previously been reported in other populations, all causing a number of common IEM disorders, including phenylketonuria, maple syrup urine disease, glycogen storage diseases, beta-ketothiolase deficiency, and Zellweger syndrome among many others. CONCLUSION: Reflecting the diverse ethnic groups residing in the UAE, we found mutations in several different population groups. However, consanguinity is evident in most cases. This report is of utmost importance for taking the necessary steps toward the prevention of inherited disorders, not just in the UAE, but anywhere in the world where these Arab and Asian populations reside, or where consanguinity is a cultural norm.


Journal article


Saudi Med J

Publication Date





353 - 359


Genetics, Population, Humans, Metabolism, Inborn Errors, Mutation, Retrospective Studies, United Arab Emirates