Let's All Celebrate! Bill S-201 Passed in the House of Commons!

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On Wednesday, March 8 Bill S-201, the Genetic Non-discrimination Act PASSED 3rd reading in the House of Commons!

Canadians became closer to being able to make‎ informed decisions about genetic tests without fear.  Bill S-201 passed the 3rd reading in the House of Commons.  The Bill still needs to go back to the Senate but all indications are that it will be supported.  After several attempts by the Liberal Justice Minister to gut the Bill through amendments, it passed in its entirety.  The Bill includes Pan-Canada legislation that makes it a criminal act to discriminate against a person based on their genetic test information, as well as amendments to the Canada Labour Code and amendments to the Canadian Human Rights Act.  The bill passed by a free vote (in which MPs are allowed to vote according to their own personal conscience rather than according to an official party line) with an overwhelming majority of 222-60.  This is a historic development, as Canada is the only G8 country without this type of legislation. 

Manitoba Proclaims International Rare Disease Day


The Province of Manitoba has become the 1st Canadian Province to officially recognize International Rare Disease Day. Our thanks to Debbie Dutka and her team of volunteers in Winnipeg for making this happen. Well done!

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February 10, 2017

Rare Disease Day Events Across Canada

Isabel Jordan

The Rare Disease Foundation is excited to be hosting and partnering with a variety of organizations across Canada to bring Rare Disease Day events across the country. The theme of this year's International Rare Disease Day is 'Research' and we couldn't be more on board with the theme!

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December 15, 2016


David Cox

Read our latest newsletter, released just in time for the Holiday Season!

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New Discovery Provides Hope for 20% of Our Community

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Novel discoveries funded by the Rare Disease Foundation and recently published in the journal Nucleic Acids Research appear poised to lead to potential new therapies to treat patients across a broad array of genetic diseases.

There are over 7,000 rare genetic diseases that affect about one in twelve people or over 500 million globally. For about 20% of these people, the gene defect arises from a specific type of abnormality known as nonsense mutation; so as opposed to tackling the daunting task of developing unique therapies for each individual disease, a new therapeutic approach targeted at this mutation (and therefore multiple genetic disorders) is being developed by Dr. Michel Roberge, a Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Medicine in partnership with The Centre for Drug Research and Development (CDRD), Canada’s national drug development and commercialization centre.

Starting with a microgrant from the Rare Disease Foundation, Dr. Roberge set out to find new therapeutic solutions that are much safer for patients. His team, alongside that of CDRD, screened more than 200,000 chemical-compounds and discovered a number of novel molecules that when combined with lower, less toxic doses of aminoglycosides enhance suppression of the premature stop signals. Subsequent modification of these compounds by CDRD’s medicinal chemistry group resulted in novel molecules that open up the possibility of treating patients across a broader spectrum of genetic diseases caused by nonsense mutations. The Rare Disease Foundation is proud to have been Dr. Roberge's first funding partner for this potentially ground-breaking research. Read more in the rotating news announcements below.

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The RARE IS EVERYWHERE book Kickstarter project is closing in on the deadline in just 8 days and we need a little more help!


There are now 8 days to go in the RARE IS EVERYWHERE Kickstarter campaign -- and while we are going strong, we need around 8k more to make it to the goal--together we can get there!


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RARE IS EVERYWHERE is a children's book of genetically rare animals that inspires kids to embrace their own rare beauty. The author is generously donating proceeds of all …

"RARE IS EVERYWHERE” is a beautifully illustrated children’s book that showcases genetically rare animals such as the white tiger, brown panda, pink grasshopper, black jaguar, blue lobster, and…

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Novel discoveries funded by the Rare Disease Foundation and recently published in the journal Nucleic Acids Research appear poised to lead to potential new therapies to treat …


August 25, 2016 

Vancouver, BC – Novel discoveries funded by the Rare Disease Foundation and recently published in the journal Nucleic Acids Research

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Fellow members of the rare diseases community:

Now is a critical time for our campaign to implement a federal orphan drug regulatory framework and an intergovernment…

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It is with great excitement that we are announcing our Edmonton Parent 2 Parent Resource Network this September! CTV Edmonton was on hand to interview 3 of our Edmonton famili…

Our dedicated group of Edmonton volunteers are working hard to make the reality of a cross-disease family Resource Network happen. A kick-off picnic on August 28th will let families get to know…

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The Face of Rare Diseases

Sat. April 8
Sheraton Wall Centre


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Event Calendar


Vancouver Area Parent 2 Parent Resource Network

Wednesday, April 19 7PM → 9:30PM PT


Calgary P2P Resource Network Meeting

Thursday, April 20 7PM → 9PM MT



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