International Summit in Human Genetics and Genomics



The International Summit in Human Genetics and Genomics is a five-year initiative (2016-2020) designed to help developing nations build and expand their knowledge base, infrastructure, systems and technologies in genetics and genomics. Each fall, researchers from abroad travel to the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland for one month of in-person training at the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI). The Summit helps them to understand the prevalence and basis of genetic diseases in their nations and to address these public health challenges. The 2019 Summit will be held on August 28 - September 28, 2019. 

Genetic disorders contribute significantly to the world's burden of disease. Many countries do not have genetically trained researchers and healthcare professionals available to address this burden, or the training to correct this deficit. As a consequence, opportunities to reduce the burden of disease are frequently missed. Acquiring and applying knowledge about genetics and genomic research through training programs like the International Summit makes it possible to anticipate, prevent, diagnose and treat many genetic and congenital birth defects, alleviating the burden these diseases have on individuals, their families and their nations.

Outcomes from the 2016, 2017 and 2018 Summits have been remarkable. Participants have established over 50 collaborations with investigators at NIH, at other US-based academic institutions and among themselves. Over 140 articles have been published and over 25 have received grants from NIH or other funding institutions. Based on Summit survey feedback and the annual outcomes on the Summits, the Summit has trained 71 professionals from 37 countries and is making great strides in achieving its goals.

For more information, please visit the NIH Summit webpage here.

Learn about the International Summit in this video:


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  • Encourage and strengthen cooperation and collaboration in genetic and genomic research and medicines across the globe.
  • Expand the knowledge base in genetics and genomics among researchers and young health-professionals in developing nations.
  • Integrate accurate genetic and genomic information and its related technologies in clinical practice for the diagnosis, treatment and management of diseases.
  • Reduce health disparities and the burden of disease and disability on people and the economies of developing nations.

Results & Accomplishments

2018 International Summit in Human Genetics and Genomics Report

2017 International Summit in Human Genetics and Genomics Report

NHGRI training has had proven results, as described in this testament from Manjit Kaur, NHGRI Program Specialist, about a previous trainee:

A researcher and pediatrician from Thailand, Dr. Shotelersuk trained with the Medical Genetics Branch at NHGRI. Upon returning to his home country, he shared information and training that led to the establishment of medical services and research opportunities in Tropical Genetic Diseases in Thailand. Now Head of the Division of Medical Genetics and Metabolism in the Department of Pediatrics at King Chulalong-korn Memorial Hospital in Bangkok, Dr. Shotelersuk published a book entitled Clinical Genetics in Children. Today, Thailand has 22 clinical geneticists and has offered training fellowships since 2014. The country has invested in outreach clinics with the help of the Red Cross, to treat children with oral clefts and has expanded research opportunities in rare and common genetic and infectious diseases.

2018 Summit Partners

Public-Sector Partners:
National Center for Advancing Translational Science (NCATS)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
National Eye Institute (NEI)
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI)
National Human Genome Research Institute (NHRGI)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR)
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR)
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities

Private-Sector Partners:
American Society of Human Genetics and Genomics*
March of Dimes*
Mayo Clinic*

*Provided financial or in-kind support for this program.

FNIH Contacts

For additional information, please contact Shawn Stern, Development Associate, at