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Clinics (Sao Paulo). 2012;67 Suppl 1:91-7.

Personalized medicine: caught between hope, hype and the real world.

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1
Department of General, Visceral and Transplantation Surgery, University Hospital Essen, Essen, Germany.

Abstract

Genomic and personalized medicine have become buzz phrases that pervade all fields of medicine. Rapid advances in "-omics" fields of research (chief of which are genomics, proteinomics, and epigenomics) over the last few years have allowed us to dissect the molecular signatures and functional pathways that underlie disease initiation and progression and to identify molecular profiles that help the classification of tumor subtypes and determine their natural course, prognosis, and responsiveness to therapies. Genomic medicine implements the use of traditional genetic information, as well as modern pangenomic information, with the aim of individualizing risk assessment, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancers and other diseases. It is of note that personalizing medical treatment based on genetic information is not the revolution of the 21st century. Indeed, the use of genetic information, such as human leukocyte antigen-matching for solid organ transplantation or blood transfusion based on ABO blood group antigens, has been standard of care for several decades. However, in recent years rapid technical advances have allowed us to perform high-throughput, high-density molecular analyses to depict the genomic, proteinomic, and epigenomic make-up of an individual at a reasonable cost. Hence, the so-called genomic revolution is more or less the logical evolution from years of bench-based research and bench-to-bedside translational medicine.

PMID:
22584712
PMCID:
PMC3328836
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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