Minn. — How is individualized medicine working? Let us count
Clinic Vice President Dr. Gianrico Farrugia recently
highlighted five areas in which the knowledge and know-how
from the human genome will be most influential in patient
care, not just at Mayo Clinic, but anywhere in the nation and
in it for you?" he asked a crowd of health providers at a
conference on the subject at the Mayo Civic Center in
Rochester, Minn. "Individualized or precision medicine
offers help for your medical practice today. You can take
advantage of these advances to help your patients, to better
diagnose, treat or prevent illness right now."
his short list of "value adds" to the practice of
medicine. There are many more, but these are the most
pervasive and applicable at the moment.
Preventing drug-related adverse affects
— prescribing medications based on a person’s genomic
information — is helping physicians avoid harmful reactions.
As Mayo has embedded its available patients' genomic
information in the electronic health record, more than 3,500
adverse reactions have been prevented in the last two years.
Microbiome markers to predict disease susceptibility and
microbes in your gut and elsewhere in and on your body can
tell physicians if you are at greater risk for some diseases
and indicate how well you’ll recover from them. They can
also be used to treat disease.
Whole exome sequencing for undiagnosed diseases
sequencing the core elements of the genome, physicians can
offer some patients a diagnosis after years of questions and
"Liquid biopsies": Cancer mutation/biomarker testing
for diagnosis and prognosis
rapidly getting to the point where we can use sequencing of
cell-free DNA in body fluids to diagnosis and follow cancers
without needing tissue from the cancer itself.
Noninvasive prenatal testing
testing is now available for a variety of genetic alterations
Farrugia also encouraged all sectors — industry, regulators,
policy makers, investors — to become involved in precision
medicine so it can continue to grow and help save lives.