Major advancements in science and technology have allowed healthcare
decisions to become increasingly granular over-time. But we still have to go
long way to understand that why different individual experience disease or
responds to treatment differently.
Therefore, a new field in healthcare called "Personalised medicine" is need
of time. The goal of personalised medicine is to streamline clinical decision
making by distinguishing in advance those patients who are most likely to be
benefited from a given treatment from those who will only incur cost and suffer
with this treatment.
This tailored intervention for giving precise medicine needs information
about patient's genome history which can be done through following:
1) Genetic diagnostics: Personal genomics is the branch of genomics
concerned with sequencing and analysis of the genome of an individual. It helps
in determining disease risk for common diseases, genetic predisposition towards
a disease and thus may help you to determine how to alter your environment and
behaviour to avoid the disease.
2) Micro fluidic systems: This is science of designing, manufacturing
and formulating devices and processes that deal with volume of fluid on order of
nanolitres (10-9) or picolitres (10-12). This micro fluidic systems have diverse
and widespread potential such as
blood cell separation equipment
genetic analysis – drug screening
electro-chromatography – laser ablation etc.
The major advantage of micro fluids is that it allows for the manipulation of
small volumes of liquids in micro fabricated channels and ability to perform all
analytical steps, including sample pretreatment reaction, seperation and
detection on a microchip in an effective and automatic format.
3) Stem Cell Therapy: Treatment of patients with various degenerative
diseases, the regeneration of injured and diseased tissues has always remained a
significant challenge. Therefore, with advancement of cell biology and material
sciences, stem cell approach came forward where patients,own cells are
transformed into model for studying disease and potential treatment to negate
the chances of rejection.
4) Gene Therapy: Under gene therapy normal genes are introduced into cells in
place of missing or defective ones in order to correct genetic disorders. Based
on genetic makeup, personalized medicine may be worked out. For example: Allelic
variants of a particular gene are found to be associated with increased risk of
malaria and even injection severity. Based on the information of genetic makeup
of an individual personalized gene therapy may be employed to reduce the chances
of infection and disease progression.
5) DNA Chips also called DNA micro assay – These are solid supports
usually of glass or silicon, upon which DNA is attached in an organised grid
fashion, each spot of DNA called probe, represents a single gene which helps in
easily looking up each person's genetic predisposition to various diseases and
help tailor their medical services.
Conclusions: We are moving in new era of scientific advancements in
healthcare through precision medicine/personalised medicine. Medical devices
that are minimally invasive, accurate, durable, user friendly and low cost can
be used to improve diagnostics, prevention and therapeutic monitoring, which
further can be used to meet the need of individuals.