2012: The Year When Genomic Medicine Started Paying Off
Remember a couple of years ago when people commemorated a 10-year anniversary of a initial breeze tellurian genome sequencing? The storyline then, in 2010, was that we all went off to genome stay and usually came home with a lousy T-shirt. Society, we were told, invested outrageous systematic resources in deciphering a formula of life, and there wasn’t most of a payoff in a form of customized, personalized medicine.
That was an easy end to strech then, when personalized medicine advocates could usually indicate to a couple of effective targeted cancer drugs—Genentech’s Herceptin and Novartis’ Gleevec—and a couple of diagnostics. But that’s changing. My inbox a past week has been full of researcher reports from medical meetings, that mostly alerted readers to tiny “incremental” advances with a number of genomic-based medicines and diagnostics. But that’s a matter of focusing on a trees, not a forest. This past year, we witnessed some unequivocally considerable swell from a early days of “clinical genomics” or “medical genomics.” The investment in low bargain of genomics and biology is starting to look visionary.
The transformation toward clinical genomics collected steam behind in Jun during a American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting. One of a dark gem stories from ASCO was about tiny companies like Cambridge, MA-based Foundation Medicine and Cambridge, MA-based Knome that started saying a surprising swell in demand from physicians for their services to assistance spin genomic information into medical information. The New York Times wrote a great story a month after about a young genomics researcher during Washington University in St. Louis who got cancer, had entrance to impossibly abounding information about his tumors, and—after some wrestling with his word company—ended adult removing a targeted drug nobody would have suspicion to allot but that information. And final month, I checked behind on Stanford University researcher Mike Snyder, who done headlines this year regulating a smorgasbord of “omics” collection to rightly diagnose himself early with Type 2 diabetes, and afterwards guard his swell behind into a healthy state.
Notice a settlement here—the stories here aren’t all about drugs. They are about a value of new biological information.
This month during a American Society of Hematology (ASH) assembly in Atlanta, GA, another new front non-stop adult in a ongoing story of “clinical genomics.” A couple of tiny and greatly rival private companies—Seattle-based Adaptive Biotechnologies and South San Francisco-based Sequenta—had emerged on a inhabitant theatre with profitable new approaches to diagnosis and illness monitoring. It’s by what is infrequently called “immune profiling.”
A tiny bit of scholarship is compulsory here to know what Adaptive and Sequenta are doing, and because it’s important. While a 3-billion-letter signature of DNA that creates adult a human genome is unchanging in roughly each dungeon of a body, a defence system’s B cells and T cells are an exception. In these cells, DNA gets shuffled around in a vast array of new combinations, permitting T cells to commend specific invaders such as influenza viruses, and permitting B cells to beget antibodies against them.
Until new advancements done DNA sequencing super-fast and super-cheap, nobody had any approach to unequivocally demeanour closely during a whole kaleidoscope of defence diversity, or a “immune repertoire” that resides within any particular like we or me.
But gene sequencing instruments have come a long way … Next Page »