What an amazing day for medicine!
This realm of medicine is highly experimental, relatively new, and absolutely positively one of my favorite emerging subspecialties in pharmacy. Individualized medicine is the new frontier. Even the most difficult of cases can sometimes miraculously be cured due to a personalized therapeutic approach. The field is new, but the potential is great. If the success rates of these experimental procedures keep going up, there is a great chance that some of the biggest challenges in medicine, such as cancer or autoimmune disorders, may see amazing new treatment options — treatments that were created specifically for you, by you (using your own genome!).
I love pharmacogenomics. Every person is different – why do we assume that standard treatment options are appropriate for everyone? We often see that this is not true in practice. Do you ever wonder why some cancer treatments are highly effective for some but fail miserably for others? Or why it is so hard for people who suffer from autoimmune disorders or chronic illnesses to get their symptoms and disease states under control? All of our genomes are different; we don’t all respond to the same therapies. Instead of always implementing the “standard” medicinal treatment for our patients, what we should be doing instead is setting the standard for gene therapy. By studying a patient-specific genome, we will already be able to tell what therapies won’t work, and save our patients from using up their precious time.
I personally think that this is an incredible advancement to medicine and pharmacy, alike. I can’t wait to see what pharmacogenomics will have in store for us in the future. What a time to be alive!
Picture Credit: www.genomicenterprise.com