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Orphanet is a database that pools resources on rare diseases and drugs for the treatment of rare diseases (so-called orphan drugs ) in order to improve their diagnosis and therapy . Orphanet was initiated in 1997 by the French Ministry of Health and the Institut national de la santé et de la recherche médicale (INSERM) and is now operated by a consortium of European partner countries under French leadership with funding from the European Union .

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