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Personalized Genetics: Weekend Summary Part One

In the last few months, I’ve been trying to keep you up-to-date in the field of personalized genetics. But recently, it has become really hard to follow all the news and announcements about this unique field of medicine. That’s why I had to divide my new report into several parts and share these links with you during the upcoming weekend. Enjoy the first part!

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There are also regulatory hurdles to overcome. Very few FDA guidelines for clinical trials of Personalized Medicine therapies exist. PM is also going to require some very highly integrated information systems, combining the whole of the biomedical knowledge base with the patient’s own electronic record.

In my view it would be best to limit the term personalized medicine to companion diagnostics, a worthwhile application that’s not especially controversial. Call the other stuff genetic testing or screening.

Ok, so now I have your DNA. I run the test on you and find that you have a DNA sequence that has been shown to be linked to heart disease. What do you do? Well, it is important that you understand probability and the fact that this DNA sequence does not guarantee that you will have heart disease. You should find out how strong the statistical correlation is between the DNA marker and the likelihood you’ll get heart disease. The correlation may be strong, hence you are likely to suffer the illness, or could be weak, in case you are at less risk.

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