Lucknow: Intensive research in the field of genomics has led to a better understanding of the pathogenesis and their potential treatments. There is considerable evidence that the same drugs and treatments may be more or less effective in different patients. This is because their bodies metabolize these drugs in different ways or respond to treatment because of differences in genetic makeup.
This information was given by experts in a program organized by Apollo Genomics Institutes, New Delhi on 25 and 26 November at Apollo Indraprastha Hospital.
In this International Symposium on “Genomic Medicine in Clinical Practice”, organized under “Personalized Medicine Awareness Month”, experts pointed out that over the years, there has been a shift from canopy disease management to precision medicine and personalized management.
Experts believe that precision medicine is tailoring a patient’s treatment according to his or her own genes. Inexpensive and readily available genetic testing has made medicine a reality not only for the most dreaded conditions such as cancer, but also for a large number of neurological and cardiac disorders. In the discussion session UK experts like Prof Dhavendra Kumar, Prof William Neumann, Dr Meeke van Helst, Dr Meena Balasubramanian shared their experiences on precision medicine and rare genetic disease management.
The symposium began with the opening remarks by Dr. Preetha Reddy, Executive Vice Chairperson, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Ltd. and Prof. Anupam Sibal, Group Medical Director, Apollo Hospitals. This was followed by the first session chaired by eminent faculty Dr. IC Verma and Dr. Rashid Merchant.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Preetha Reddy said, “The next frontier in medicine is genomics. Research increasingly points to the role of genes in the tendency to develop a whole range of diseases. Also, with better and more accurate tests now available, we need to expand the scope of this science to the wider community. Given the heterogeneity of our population and the burden of disease, especially non-communicable diseases, the need for genetic testing as a preventive and predictive tool is of utmost importance.
Delivering the keynote address, Professor Narinder Mehra, Honorary Emeritus Scientist, ICMR, New Delhi and former Dean, AIIMS New Delhi, explained how HLA class genes affect the health and disease of individuals.
During the event, Dr. Anupam Sibal, Group Medical Director and Senior Consultant, Department of Gastroenterology, said, “Through Apollo Genomics Institute, our group strives to be India’s leading institute that advances genetic medicine and integrates it into clinical practice across specialties. Integrates into practice. We know the role played by genetics in the origin and course of disease and through the research and clinical work being done by the Institute we hope to bring genetic medicine into the mainstream to help prevent many diseases Can go.
On the second day of the symposium, senior consultants from all specialties such as Neurology, Nephrology, Endocrinology, Gastroenterology and Cardiology discussed the utility of genetic testing in patient care.
The symposium was a conference of panel discussions for optimal bedside multidisciplinary patient care along with presentations of world class genomic research by Dr. Vinod Scaria, Dr. Sridhar Sivasubbu, CSIR-IGIB.
Speaking at the event, Dr. (Prof.) Dhavendra Kumar said, “We are keen to raise awareness among citizens on the power of genetic therapy in disease prevention. Also, we recognize the need for capacity building in terms of resources, research for clinical practitioners on contemporary developments in this field. Only through sharing clinical specialties can we ensure that the impact of genetic medicine is truly felt.”
Apart from these, Dr. Divya Agarwal, Consultant, Department of Medical Genetics, Apollo Indraprastha Hospital, in her concluding remarks said that the Apollo Genomics Institutes established across the country aim to provide comprehensive and integrated specialized patient services related to all types of genetic and inherited diseases .