Home > Uncategorized > What’s your vision of the future of genomics medicine

What’s your vision of the future of genomics medicine

I see the future of genomics medicine to lie in, eventually, health screening. This is the most proactive way to Lee Hood’s vision of P4 medicine. In responsive medicine (which is where we are today), often, patients experience frustrations of having presented internal or even external symptoms but can’t get a clear diagnosis for a long time. With the help of sequencing, physicians will be empowered by genome and transcriptome level abnormalities to better guide diagnosis. But that’s not enough. The future of medicine will aim at preventing any abnormalities from accumulating and eventually leading to symptoms. That’s why sequencing will have to go to the health screening level, and that’s when it’s realizing the true value of preventive healthcare which comes with dramatic care cost savings compared to responsive healthcare.

How would it be done? Whole genome sequencing may only need to be done once or a few times in one’s life time. Transcriptome wise, one can imagine it being used with the same frequency as the routine physicals according to age: every 2-3 years for young adults, annually for middle aged and maybe twice a year for elderly. The main aim of transcriptome sequencing is to catch early signs of abnormal growth. Whole genome sequencing will be done when physicians see the need from symptoms. One can even imagine it replacing many of the routine tests we’re getting today that, for example, measures blood protein/antigen levels as indications of diseases. The cost of such tests compared to regular sequencing will make it a no-brainer when sequencing cost is below $1000 for clinical grade genomes, and below $100 for transcriptomes. At a minimum, sequencing can help to limit those biochemical tests to only serve as confirmatory tools.

How do we get there?

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