The goal of personalized medicine is to optimize patient outcomes by delivering the right treatment to the right patient at the right time. By accounting for variability in patients’ genes and their environment and lifestyle, healthcare providers can tailor medical treatment and prevention strategies to each individual. Recent advances in genetic and clinical pharmacology research are bringing the promise of personalized medicine to fruition.
Genetic Variants Associated With Hypertension
Essential hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, is a complex and multifactorial condition. In addition to the impact of well-established environmental and lifestyle factors on hypertension, recent genome-wide association studies have identified many genetic variants contributing to differences in hypertension and antihypertensive medication drug response among individuals. To implement personalized treatment strategies based on an individual’s genetic profile, a genetic test with high sensitivity and specificity for these variants is needed.
Personalized Treatment Based on Genetic Variants Improves Blood Pressure Control
In a recent article published in Science Translational Medicine, Shen et al. report the development of a simple, high-throughput fluorescent assay to analyze genetic variants associated with hypertension or adverse effects of antihypertensive medications.
First, the researchers demonstrated the assay successfully identified 10 select genetic variants in whole-blood samples from 150 patients hospitalized with hypertension. Then, they applied the assay in a prospective clinical trial of 100 patients with essential hypertension and found that personalized treatment based on patients’ assay results significantly improved blood pressure control over a 7-day period compared with conventional treatment using standard guidelines.
Personalized treatment of patients with hypertension using this novel genetic variant detection assay may maximize the efficacy of the antihypertensive medication and reduce rates of uncontrolled hypertension, particularly in resource-limited settings.
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Lauren Dembeck, Ph.D., Geneticist & Science Writer, Bridge Informatics
Lauren Dembeck, Ph.D., is an experienced science and medical writer. During her doctoral research at North Carolina State University, she conducted genome-wide association studies to identify genetic variants contributing to natural variation in complex traits and used a combination of classical and molecular genetics approaches in validation studies. Lauren was a postdoctoral fellow at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology in Japan. During her postdoc, she used fluorescence-activated cell sorting paired with high-throughput sequencing approaches to study the formation and regulation of neuronal circuits.
She is part of our team of expert content writers at Bridge Informatics, bringing our readers and customers everything they need to know at the cutting edge of bioinformatics research. If you’re interested in reaching out, please email [email protected] or [email protected].