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BioCurious Message Board › Personalized Medicine

Personalized Medicine

A former member
Post #: 36
I am a member of another Meetup group - "The San Francisco Math Meetup Group". The following message showed up on that mailing list recently :

"There are several companies pushing into a space which can loosely be called "personalized medicine". This entails processing the DNA genetic sequence and using statistics to attempt to give a likelihood for the pre-disposition for certain diseases.

One such company is called Navigenics and I was surprised to see that they have an academic paper which shows the mathematics behind their process (which I assume is patented).

Theoretically processes of this type can (or may in the future) allow us to make therapeutic medicine which is tailored to an individual based on the DNA.

I have not read this yet since statistics is a "slog" for me (compared to abstract algebra :-)! Be aware that in addition to mathematics, this material also has lots of biotech terms like SNPs, odds-ratios, genotypes. As always, Wikipedia is the best choice to get a paragraph or two about unfamiliar technical terms."
A former member
Post #: 15
Hi, Tim, long time, no see!

I'm actually taking a class in this at SJSU this Winter/Spring (called Genetics in Medicine).

There is no doubt that this is a new and up-coming field. But, it has a long way to go, just like any new area of science. Our understanding of the genome of humans, or any other animal, is still very rudimentary.

I will try to make time to grab that Navigenics paper for a quick gloss over. Thanks for the heads-up!

A former member
Post #: 4
When I attended BIL PILL (which followed TED MED in San Diego last fall) one presenter spoke of some coops he had started to create medicines for each person individually. He thought the first few would be slow and expensive to create, but he said as long as the coops had little assets they wouldn't be worth suing. Further he checked with the FDA and the Canadian Health system and neither one had any objections to creating and testing such personalized medicines on the one person they were designed for. He had previously worked for a big pharmaceutical company and had amusing anecdotes about that experience.

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