Personalized Genetic Medicine
Breakthroughs in our understanding of an individual's unique molecular characteristics, made possible by research and innovation, hold the promise of customized health care. A revolution in the field of human genetics in the past decade is making it possible to personalize the diagnosis and treatment of disease at the individual patient level.
Partners geneticists and physicians have been part of the cadre of dedicated researchers who are helping lead this genetic revolution. Because of our belief in the power and potential of genetics-based medicine, we established the Partners HealthCare Center for Personalized Genetic Medicine (PCPGM) in 2001.
PCPGM was launched in recognition of the excitement of the Human Genome Project and as a commitment to the importance that genetic and genomic knowledge would play in human health.
In the past several years, discoveries in human genetics have had significant impacts on virtually all specialties of medicine. In the clinical arena, it is now possible to use the emerging genetic and genomic knowledge to diagnose and treat patients. It is anticipated that such knowledge will revolutionize medical practice and result in an advance in personalized medicine.
What is Personalized Medicine?
Personalized medicine is the ability to determine an individual's unique molecular characteristics and to use those genetic distinctions to diagnose more finely an individual's disease, select treatments that increase the chances of a successful outcome, and reduce possible adverse reactions. Personalized medicine also is the ability to predict an individual's susceptibility to diseases and thus to try to take steps that may help avoid or reduce the extent to which an individual will experience a disease.
The knowledge of the genetic basis of human disease is also ushering a new era in drug development that is focused on targeted drug development. Genetic profiling of patients will help in defining individuals risk for clinical outcomes and their response to specific drugs.
The Work of the Partners Center for Personalized Genetic Medicine
The purposes of Partners Center for Personalized Genetic Medicine (PCPGM) since its founding have been to promote genetics and genomics in research and clinical medicine and to help realize the promise of personalized medicine by accelerating the integration of genetic knowledge into clinical care.
PCPGM is accomplishing its mission by supporting and facilitating:
- Important discoveries in the genomics era that will enable advancing the knowledge of how genetics affects human health and disease
- The transformation of the practice of medicine to a more genetics/genomics-based approach
- The education of practicing and future clinicians and scientists as well as patients and the general public through the development of educational programs and materials in genetics and genomics
Advancing Health Care: Personalized Genetic Medicine
The Partners HealthCare Center for Personalized Genetic Medicine (PCPGM) develops genetic tests to create personalized treatment options for patients. The advancements that PCPGM is making in the field of genetics are used directly in improving patient care. Hear from Heidi Rehm, PhD, FACMG, on her work at PCPGM.
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