Biomarkers & Personalized Medicine

Introduction

Personalized medicine, also referred to as individualized therapy, simply means the prescription of specific treatments and therapeutics best suited for an individual taking into consideration both genetic and environmental factors that influence response to therapy. Personalized medicine is described in a textbook on this topic (Jain 2015). Genomic/proteomic technologies have facilitated the development of personalized medicines but other technologies are also contributing to this effort. Personalized medicine is the best way to integrate new biotechnologies into medicine for improving the understanding of pathomechanism of diseases and management of patients. Important basics of personalized medicine are derived from the following technologies and approaches:

  • 1. Molecular diagnostics, particularly SNP genotyping
  • 2. Biomarkers
  • 3. Integration of diagnostics with therapy, particularly monitoring of therapy
  • 4. Bioinformatics for evaluation and use of data from various biotechnologies
  • 5. Pharmacogenomics
  • 6. Pharmacogenetics
  • 7. Pharmacoproteomics

Development of personalized medicine is closely linked to biomarkers, which may serve as the basis for diagnosis, drug discovery and monitoring of diseases. This process of personalization starts at the development stage of a medicine and is based on pharmacogenomics, pharmacogenetics and pharmacoproteomics, which will be described in the following sections.

The economics and uncertainties of drug development demand that companies quickly demonstrate the safety and efficacy of their compounds. Using biomarkers to make key development decisions early can reduce development timelines and © Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2017

K.K. Jain, The Handbook of Biomarkers, DOI 10.1007/978-1-4939-7431-3_18

increase the likelihood of regulatory and clinical success, thereby maximizing market positioning. Biomarkers are becoming more critical in the process of discovering and developing new drugs and in determining additional uses for established drugs. Biomarkers are ushering in the age of personalized medicine.

 
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