• By Colette Gallagher

Science Saturday: Saving time, lives and resources with new genetic testing treatment

November 13, 2021

Genomics experts worldwide released a paper highlighting advances in rare disease, cancer, population health and carrier screening at the 10th Annual Individualizing Medicine Conference in October.

"The use cases we explored in the paper, 'The Economic Analysis of the Value of Genetic Testing' are only the tip of the iceberg in the realm of precision medicine," says co-author Konstantinos Lazaridis, M.D., the Carlson and Nelson Endowed Executive Director for Mayo Clinic's Center for Individualized Medicine. "We found with the development of more effective sequencing methods, the prospect of truly moving genomics to the clinic for a wide variety of uses will become a reality."

Precision medicine looks at the interaction of a person's genes, environment and lifestyle, and its contribution to disease. It aims to find the right treatment for the right person at the right time for disease treatment and prevention.

Genetic testing offers many benefits, such as:

  • Diagnosing and assessing the severity of disease.
  • Predicting a patient's risk for developing a type of disease.
  • Revealing the likelihood of passing on a disease to children.

Today, sequencing costs may be as low as $1,000 and results take only days or weeks instead of years to deliver to patients. When the human genome was mapped in 2003, it took 13 years to complete and cost $5.34 billion.

Big data sets are another critical advancement in making genomics more feasible. Advances in computational and statistical methods allow researchers and physicians to use genomic data and find targeted therapies for a patient, according to Cameron Fox, a co-author from the World Economic Forum.

Read the rest of the article on the Individualized Medicine blog.