The HVP China Node was officially launched on 26 June, 2015, after an agreement was signed with the Beijing China Health Huayang Institute of Gene Technology on the 6th of January this year. China have been involved in a limited capacity with the Project since 2010, but this marks the beginning of what is looking to be a unified Chinese contribution to the Human Variome Project.
The ceremony was held in the China Hall of Science and Technology with more than 150 attendees, including government officers, international guests, experts and professionals in the areas of genetics and genomics in China. Dr Casimiro Vizzini from the International Basic Science Program of the United Nations Scientific, Educational and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) and Mr Chris Arnold, Chairman of the Human Variome Project International Limited Board, addressed the delegates. The Human Variome Project were further represented by Professor Garry Cutting, HVPI Board member and Co-Chair of the International Scientific Advisory Committee and Professor Peter Taschner, member of the International Scientific Advisory Committee and Chair of the Gene/Disease Specific Database Advisory Council. Representatives from the UNESCO Beijing Office also attended the event. Mr Zhonghua Gao from the Beijing China Health Huayang Institute of Gene Technology was appointed as the Director of the HVP China Node Working Committee.
The HVP China Node Working Committee had held a meeting on the day preceding the launch. Professor Runlin Ma from the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology, Chinese Academy of Sciences was elected as Chair of the Expert Committee of HVP China Node Working committee.