precision medicine

The flip side of personal genomics

Interesting article in Nature about genomics and the way having a mutation may not actualise in any condition or disease.

Click here to read full article.

$1 million for a drug used once

This is a story of precision medicines and their value.

The drug is alipogene tiparvovec (aka Glybera). Approved in 2012, it is “a medicine widely heralded as the “first gene therapy” in the Western world” – a treatment to correct DNA.
But when the Berlin physician Elisabeth Steinhagen-Thiessen wanted to give a patient Glybera last fall, it wasn’t so easy. She […]

Vita Brevis Ars Longa: Feeding Watson on Dubious Data

Will Feeding Watson $3 Billion Worth of Healthcare Payment Data Improve its Decisions?

This  recent blog post by Ross Koppel and Frank Meissner considers if IBM Watson can really ‘crack’ healthcare, even as it munches on its gourmet diet of $3Bn worth of so called ‘data’.

Their answer is a careful ‘maybe’ .. but they are not going to get you overexcited about instant transformation. […]

3D printing of drugs: “the possibilities seem endless”

The possibilities do seem endless, but the Guardian asks whether the 3D printing of medications is safe. They speculate how the pharmacies might change if drugs were printed in local pharmacies, to exact and personalized formulations. The FDA has already given the go-ahead for Spritam levetiracetam (a drug used to control epilepsy) and the hope is to follow with […]

Systems Medicine 2.0: looking at Big Data from a non-reductionist perspective

A new model for understanding and using drugs may emerge by replacing traditional reductionist approaches (where patients with comorbidities are given a different medicine for each of the conditions, as if they were independent) with a systems approach (with non-linear, dynamic models), applied to Big Data research.

Very interesting thought provoking paper:

Tillmann T, Gibson AR, Scott G, Harrison O, […]

November 13th, 2015|Big Data, Medicine, Research|0 Comments|

Precision medicine on BBC Radio 4 Today Programme

Precision medicine  was on the BBC Today programme, yesterday 29 October 2015.

Dr Anna Schuh, associate professor of molecular diagnostics at Oxford University and director of the Genomic Medicine Centre, and Professor Richard Barker, head of the Centre for the Advancement of Sustainable Medical innovation and chair of the government’s Precision Medicine Catapult, were interviewed about recent results of a […]

Collective health versus individual-target therapies

“…health differences between groups and within groups are not driven by clinical care but by social-structural factors that shape our lives.”
Bayer R, and Galea S. Public Health in the Precision-Medicine Era. New England Journal of Medicine. 2015;373(6):499-501. http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1506241?rss=searchAndBrowse

With an audio interview with the author on the NEJM website.

making the public healthy is different from the sum of the provision […]

August 13th, 2015|Medicine, Policy|0 Comments|

Printing Digital Drugs

The Guardian reports on 3D printing drugs. The FDA (US Food & Drug Administration) has approved the printing of a pill containing a new drug, Spritam levetiracetam, (to control epileptic seizures). There are a number of universities across the world working on applying this technology to drugs, hoping to make it safer and more tailored to individual patients.

Full article […]

Sounds like a diagnosis?

We are used to seeing articles and research about smartphones and how helpful they can be for logging appointments, helping remember when to take medication, giving helpful information and so forth, but there are also apps which are designed to diagnose, too.

In an article in Nature, three such apps are detailed: ResApp, Priori and ApneaApp. The all use sound […]

On the aura of infallibility of genetic tests

…geneticists also pointed out that companies’ marketing materials make it seem as though the tests are infallible. As the testing firm Sequenom puts it in one advertisement: “Positive or negative results. Never maybe.”

[…] For Solomon, genetics is simply a new tool with a learning curve, the same as any other. “When the electrocardiogram was first developed, about a hundred […]