The biggest challenge of precision medicine is that it must become personalized medicine, analyzing which treatment will be the best for each person.
December 13, 2022. 2:10 pm
Precision medicine is understood as those tools that are capable of predicting the efficacy of diagnostic studies and treatments in a not only individualized but precise manner”. Personalized medicine is the application of this medicine, depending on the characteristics of the person, based on precision medicine research. Experts now advocate use precision medicine tools such as genomics and big data for the treatment of diabetes.
However, the Diabetes is a polygenic disease. That is, it is a consequence of the alteration in the sequence of genetic information in several genes. Usually on different chromosomes and under the influence of multiple environmental factors. In this way, for it to be triggered, external factors also influence, such as lifestyle (diet, exercise, smoking…).
Genomics and big data
Francisco Javier Carrasco Sánchez, an internist who is a member of SEMI, addressed this issue in the framework of the 43rd National Congress of Internal Medicine of SEMI. According to him, current medicine and the approach to diabetes is based on scientific evidence. However, this approach has many limitations because currently clinical studies are based on demonstrating the usefulness of treatments in groups of patients. We measure this efficacy with a concept that we call NNT (number needed to treat) to avoid an event, such as be a hospitalization, a heart attack, a stroke and/or death.
Thus, a drug with a NNT = 22 tells us that it is necessary to treat 22 patients with one treatment to prevent one event. Likewise, to refine knowledge, subgroups of patients are studied and, more recently, different phenotypes to classify into subgroups the patients who benefit more from a certain treatment.
“The biggest challenge of precision medicine is that it must become personalized medicine, analyzing which treatment will be the best for each person. To achieve this we need more information such as that provided by genomics and big data capable of identifying the individual who benefits from one or another treatment. That is the end of precision medicine”, concluded the expert.