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Biomark Med. 2009 Dec;3(6):679-84. doi: 10.2217/bmm.09.76.

Clinical pharmacology: a paradigm for individualized medicine.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics, Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Medicine, Thomas Jefferson University, 132 South 10th Street, 1170 Main, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA.


Individualized medicine provides a powerful engine revolutionizing the practice of clinical pharmacology, tailoring genetic and molecular profiles of patients to improve therapeutic specificity, reduce treatment variability and minimize adverse drug events. In that context, advances in individualized medicine have transformed the science of clinical pharmacology and therapeutics from drug discovery through identification of drugable targets, development through stratification of disease risk, regulation through identifying pathways mediating off-target effects and utilization through personalizing drug regimens. This revolution in fundamental and applied therapeutics has entrained an evolution in biology and medicine. Insights in the mechanistic basis of cell, tissue and organ function, and their interface with the environment are being translated to define disease risk, identify processes mediating disease susceptibility, target mechanism-based therapies, and tailor prevention and control paradigms, providing previously unanticipated opportunities for patient-specific disease management. The emerging field of individualized medicine is transforming the practice of clinical pharmacology, driving the leading edge of discovery from the laboratory bench to the evidence basis of practice in the clinic, extending to populations, to transform healthcare and create predictive, personalized and pre-emptive solutions for tailored patient-specific therapeutic strategies.

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