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Transl Res. 2008 Apr;151(4):181-93. doi: 10.1016/j.trsl.2007.10.005. Epub 2007 Dec 18.

Integrating genomic and clinical medicine: searching for susceptibility genes in complex lung diseases.

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Section of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Pritzker School of Medicine, University of Chicago, 5841 S. Maryland Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637, USA.


The integration of molecular, genomic, and clinical medicine in the post-genome era provides the promise of novel information on genetic variation and pathophysiologic cascades. The current challenge is to translate these discoveries rapidly into viable biomarkers that identify susceptible populations and into the development of precisely targeted therapies. In this article, we describe the application of comparative genomics, microarray platforms, genetic epidemiology, statistical genetics, and bioinformatic approaches within examples of complex pulmonary pathobiology. Our search for candidate genes, which are gene variations that drive susceptibility to and severity of enigmatic acute and chronic lung disorders, provides a logical framework to understand better the evolution of genomic medicine. The dissection of the genetic basis of complex diseases and the development of highly individualized therapies remain lofty but achievable goals.

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