Posts (97)

3 days ago · Genetic testing for earlier diagnosis and treatment of rheumatoid arthritis

If you are one of the estimated 1.5 million Americans who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis, you know about the painful, swollen and stiff joints that are common symptoms of this chronic inflammatory disorder. Mayo Clinic has been a leader in discovering biomarkers – indicators of health and disease – that link rheumatoid arthritis to the bacteria in your gut. The July 2017 edition of Mayo Clinic Proceedings highlights research into an individualized approach to treating rheumatoid arthritis.

Carla Wijbrandts, M.D., Ph.D., University of Amsterdam, and Paul-Peter Tak, M.D.,  Ph.D., Cambridge University, authors of the paper Prediction of Response to Targeted Treatment in Rheumatoid Arthritis, provide an overview of research underway to identify biological and genetic variations that can help predict which patients will respond well to each available therapy, especially newly developed biological agents. The authors also provide suggested clinical guidelines for using genetic testing to guide treatment, a framework they note will need to be modified as clinical trials currently underway are completed.

According to Eric Matteson, M.D., professor of Medicine and consultant in the Department of Rheumatology at Mayo Clinic’s campus in Rochester, Minnesota, a personalized approach is improving care for many patients.

Dr. Eric Matteson

“This research confirms there is no one single factor that can predict how beneficial a drug may be, or if a person will have certain side effects. The studies validate that genetics, gender, age, body weight and blood tests can and do help guide decisions about which therapies to use for treating rheumatoid arthritis. Taking these factors into account, patients and physicians can better focus in on particular risk factors for severe disease as well as likelihood that a patient will have a good response to therapy. This personalized approach and the predictive tools are important for guiding treatment for the safest and most effective therapies,” says Dr. Matteson.

These findings are important because RA is a painful disease that affects quality of life. The disease occurs when your immune system attacks the tissues in your body, affecting your joints and other parts of your body, such as your eyes, skin, lungs, heart and blood vessels. While there is no cure, new advances in treatments can reduce symptoms and help prevent the disease from progressing. So the challenge facing physicians is to find the right treatment for each patient as early as possible to prevent further disability and improve patients’ quality of life.

Mayo Clinic Proceedings Symposium on Precision Medicine 

This paper is the fifth in Mayo Clinic Proceedings Symposium on Precision Medicine, a series of articles that cover a wide range of topics in personalized medicine. Watch for upcoming articles in the symposium, which will focus on how personalized medicine and genomics are impacting patient care. Learn more about the series.

Learn more about precision medicine research for rheumatoid arthritis

Join us to learn more about individualized medicine

Register to attend Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics. The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, with support from the Jackson Family Foundation, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine is hosting the conference with support from the Jackson Family Foundation.

Join our community

Follow the latest news related to the conference on the Center for Individualized Medicine blogFacebookLinkedIn or Twitter at @MayoClinicCIM and use the hashtag #CIMCon17.

 

4 days ago · Will health care improve if everybody has their DNA sequenced?

Rapid advances in genomic testing have led to better screening and individualized treatments for many diseases, including rare genetic disorders and cancer. Now that genetic testing is becoming faster and less expensive, should it become part of routine medical care for healthy people? Should everyone have their DNA sequenced to learn the medically informative code that their genome holds? This is one of the questions Keith Stewart, M.B., Ch.B., Carlson and Nelson endowed director, Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, will address in his keynote presentation at this year’s Individualizing Medicine Conference. The Center for Individualized Medicine will host the conference on Oct. 9-10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Dr. Keith Stewart

“The promise – and challenge – of genomic medicine is to apply it so that it will help individualize health care for each patient without creating anxiety or leading to unnecessary ancillary testing. Once we address the barriers to bringing this powerful tool into the hands of every physician, we postulate that we will be able to offer patients better care, based on more individualized information about their health and disease,” says Dr. Stewart.

In his conference presentation, Dr. Stewart will highlight progress to date at Mayo Clinic in advancing individualized medicine and will use his personal journey of having his genome sequenced to highlight the possible benefits (and risks) that preemptive genetic testing could offer patients, including:

  • Learning if you are more likely to develop certain cancers, so you can be proactive and reduce your cancer risk with screening and lifestyle changes.
  • Offering cancer screening with a blood test, rather than PET scans, MRIs or needle biopsies.
  • Helping with family planning. Testing can reveal whether you are at increased risk of passing down an inherited condition to your children.
  • Using pharmacogenomics testing to identify how your genetic makeup affects how you process medications, helping your physician select the right medications that will provide the most benefit and minimize the chance for harmful side effects.

Dr. Stewart will also highlight how Mayo Clinic is working to overcome barriers to implementing genetic testing into everyday practice. Mayo researchers and physicians are working to address these questions:

  • How do you take complex data from genetic testing and add it to an electronic health record so physicians can easily access it, use it to guide health care decisions and explain it to their patients?
  • How can you help physicians learn to use and accept this new technology as a valuable tool to provide better care for their patients?
  • How do you continually reinterpret this information and modify it over time to create a helpful resource as genomic knowledge grows?
  • How do you show that genomic tests will reduce health care costs and improve medical care so that insurers will routinely cover these tests for patients?

Dr. Stewart is also the Vasek and Anna Maria Polak Professor of Cancer Research and a consultant in the Division of Hematology/Oncology at Mayo Clinic’s campus in Arizona.

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Hear Dr. Stewart and other world-renowned experts discuss the latest research in precision medicine and how it can be applied to improve diagnosis and treatment for many conditions at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics.

The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine is hosting the conference with support from the Jackson Family Foundation.

Thu, Jul 13 12:25pm · Obesity: an individualized approach doubles the success rate of weight loss therapy

Many people think if they just stick to a diet and exercise, they’ll lose weight; unfortunately, many are not successful. They wonder why they can’t lose weight even after trying many different diets, work out programs and medications. According to Andres Acosta, M.D., Ph.D., the answers, at least partially, may be in your genes. His research in obesity shows that there is not just one type of obesity, and there are many different genetic and biological factors that play a role in losing or gaining weight. That’s why Dr. Acosta and his team have developed an individualized approach to tackle obesity – one patient at a time.

In the new Obesity Clinic within Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, a multidisciplinary team selects therapy for each patient based on his or her genetic and biological characteristics, environment and behavior. The new approach is already dramatically increasing treatment success and pioneering the application of precision medicine to treat chronic diseases.

Dr. Andres Acosta

“Prior to using an individualized approach, only 30 percent of obese patients had successful weight loss after treatment. We studied 500 patients to identify the factors leading to their obesity and then selected the best therapy for each patient based on their unique characteristics. With this new approach, patients with obesity will lose two times more weight than with standard therapy. This is critical because obesity is one of the leading causes of death and increases the risk for developing diabetes, heart disease and many types of cancer. Our goal is to help people get control of their weight and live a healthier lifestyle,” says Dr. Acosta.

“We often think of individualized medicine being used to treat cancer or rare genetic disorders. Now we are pioneering a new treatment for obesity, a chronic disease. This is where the future of precision medicine is headed – developing individualized treatments for many common, chronic conditions.”

So how does the individualized approach work for patients with obesity?

Here is an example: some obese patients do not experience a normal sensation of fullness after eating and it takes them longer to feel full. Dr. Acosta and his team were able to identify genetic characteristics linked to this condition and then prescribe a currently available medication to help these patients feel full sooner, stop overeating and lose weight.

“This individualized approach to treating obesity allows physicians to maximize the effectiveness and safety of currently available, FDA-approved medications and endoscopic and surgical procedures. It may also lead to the development of new treatments to meet the unique needs of patients.” – Dr. Andres Acosta

“This individualized approach to treating obesity allows physicians to maximize the effectiveness and safety of currently available, FDA-approved medications and endoscopic and surgical procedures. It may also lead to the development of new treatments to meet the unique needs of patients,” says Dr. Acosta.

The Obesity Clinic is open to anyone who is overweight or obese and wants to lose weight. Patients visiting the clinic will see a multidisciplinary health care team, which includes gastroenterologists, dietitians, surgeons, endocrinologists and psychologists, all specializing in the treatment of obesity. As part of their evaluation, patients will have:

  • Genetic testing to identify unique characteristics that may impact weight gain or make weight loss more difficult
  • Pharmacogenomics testing to identify any genetic factors that impact how a person processes medications
  • Evaluation of eating habits, including appetite and diet
  • Assessment of lifestyle and behavioral factors that may play a role in weight gain

Patients also meet one on one with staff in Mayo Clinic Healthy Living Program to develop a personalized plan for nutrition, fitness and wellness. With follow up support from wellness coaches, the program helps patients successfully maintain control over their weight and live a healthier lifestyle.

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Learn more about precision medicine and how it can be applied to improve diagnosis and treatment for many conditions at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics.

The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine is hosting the conference with support from the Jackson Family Foundation.

Tue, Jul 11 9:41am · A perfect match – student’s summer research provides a glimpse into a career in precision medicine

Madelyn O’Gorman

Curiosity, creativity and a passion for improving health care, one patient at a time – these are qualities that Madelyn O’Gorman strives to bring to her work as a summer undergraduate research fellow (SURF) in the Center for Individualized Medicine. O’Gorman has returned to Mayo Clinic for her second summer as one of 13 University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign students pursuing research as part of Mayo Clinic and University of Illinois Alliance for Technology-Based Healthcare.

For O’Gorman, her work at Mayo matches perfectly with her interests and career goals.

“As a bioengineering major, I have always had a passion for science and research discoveries that can improve care for patients. At Mayo, I have had the opportunity to work on developing new diagnostic tests and treatments that will help individualize therapy for patients with many skin conditions, ranging from melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, to sunburn and skin rashes related to radiation treatment. Each of these research projects has great potential to improve care for patients,” says O’Gorman.

“I chose to return to Mayo for a second summer because the collaboration and opportunities presented here are unlike anywhere else. The emphasis on bringing innovative therapies from ‘bench to bedside’ and the constant progress made in transforming discoveries into patient care at Mayo is unique and motivating. My experiences at Mayo are paving the way for my ideal career in therapeutic development and are giving me a clinical connection that I have not been exposed to in my research back at school,” says O’Gorman.

O’Gorman is part of a research team developing a screening test to help identify which melanoma patients are at risk of having their disease metastasize or spread to other parts of their body.

According to her research mentor Alexander Meves, M.D., O’Gorman is gaining critical, hands-on experience in laboratory techniques, research methods and regulatory challenges.

Dr. Alexander Meves

“By analyzing a melanoma patient’s tumor sample, Madelyn is helping identify biomarkers that can show whether a patient’s melanoma is at low risk or high risk of spreading and whether he or she  should consider additional screening and therapy. This approach allows us to look at the patient tumor from a molecular level and potentially provide a more accurate diagnosis than a visual examination of a pathology sample. Madelyn is an enthusiastic member of our multidisciplinary team, which includes Tamas Ordog, M.D., director, Center for Individualized Medicine Epigenomics Program, senior biostatistician Vera Suman, Ph.D., and pathologists Julia Lehman, M.D., and Alina Bridges, M.D.,” says Dr. Meves.

Dr. Stephen Ekker

O’Gorman is also working with Dr. Meves and Stephen Ekker, Ph.D., on developing a cream that can be used to prevent the skin damage from sun exposure that could lead to melanoma. The same cream or a similar therapy may also prevent skin rashes that many cancer patients experience after having radiation treatments.

To round out her research portfolio, O’Gorman is working with Saranya Wyles, M.D., Ph.D., to develop a cream that could prevent or reduce scars that occur along a surgical incision. This treatment could provide better cosmetic results and healing after surgery.

As Dr. Meves points out, students like Madelyn are the future of precision medicine research.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to work with bright, young students like Madelyn who are interested in pursuing careers in individualized medicine. We hope to provide them with the tools they need to advance the field and create more personalized approaches for patient care,” says Dr. Meves.

Gerstner Family Career Development Award

The research that O’Gorman is conducting with Dr. Meves is supported by The Gerstner Family Foundation. Dr. Meves is one of two 2016 recipients of the Gerstner Family Career Development Award in Individualized Medicine, an award established by the Gerstner Family Foundation to provide early career investigators important seed money to conduct research to predict, prevent, treat and cure disease using individualized medicine approaches. Learn more about the awards here.

Mayo Clinic and Illinois Alliance for Technology-Based Healthcare

The Mayo Clinic and Illinois Alliance for Technology-Based Healthcare was created in 2010 and unites Mayo’s clinical and research expertise with Illinois’ strengths in technology, engineering, and life sciences, to advance research and clinical treatment options in individualized medicine. In addition to funding research activities and technology development, Mayo Clinic and Illinois Alliance supports research opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as continuing education programs for professionals.

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Learn more about precision medicine and how it can be applied to improve diagnosis and treatment for many conditions at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics.

The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine is hosting the conference with support from the Jackson Family Foundation.

 

 

Fri, Jul 7 9:30am · Educating the next generation of innovators to usher in the genomic age of medicine

By Susan Buckles

The Mayo Clinic-Illinois Computational Genomics course was held at three separate locations for the first time in 2017. These are participants from the Urbana-Champaign location on the University of Illinois campus.

Bright and eager minds are being primed to tackle the big data challenge that comes with genomic medicine. The Computational Genomics class, a collaboration between Mayo Clinic and the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (Illinois), is aimed at developing a workforce with skills to more quickly, cheaply, and efficiently analyze, interpret, and apply DNA test results to patient care.

Consider this: sequencing just one person’s genome produces enough data to reach from the Earth to the moon. The challenge is sorting through the massive data to understand what is causing disease. This data must be compiled, analyzed, and stored in a format that is easily accessible so physicians can use it at a moment’s notice to make a diagnosis or select an individualized treatment.

That’s where the Computational Genomics class comes in. This week-long intensive course brings together medical, graduate, and post-doctoral students and trainees from Mayo and Illinois. University of Illinois faculty teach lectures and lead hands-on lab exercises in a variety of subject areas, including:

  • Computation and statistical analysis to better understand genetic variants that impact health and disease
  • Genome sequencing and assembly
  • Polymorphism and variant analysis
  • Epigenomics
  • Data visualization

Course participants from Mayo Clinic’s campus in Jacksonville, Florida. Thirty nine attendees also joined in from Mayo’s campus in Rochester, Minnesota.

The 2017 course was held June 19-23 in three locations: Mayo Clinic’s campuses in Rochester, Minnesota, and Jacksonville, Florida, and at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology at the University of Illinois.

“The Mayo Clinic-Illinois Computational Genomics course represents an excellent opportunity for researchers on the Rochester and Jacksonville campuses to engage in a week-long course that covers all major facets of the discipline. This course provides comprehensive lectures from experts in the field and valuable hands on experience running the latest tools and pipelines,” says Curtis Younkin, a teaching assistant with Mayo Clinic.

Researchers at Mayo Clinic and the University of Illinois are collaborating to develop additional technology and capacity to meet the big data challenge as part of the Mayo Clinic & Illinois Alliance for Technology-based Healthcare.

Learn more about ongoing efforts to improve genomic data analysis

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Hear leading experts address the challenges of managing genomic data and learn how the latest precision medicine research is being used to improve patient care for many conditions at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics.

The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mon, Jul 3 10:04am · Trying to quit smoking? Genetics may help find the right plan for success

After trying different methods, why do many people have difficulty quitting smoking? That’s a question Rachel Tyndale, Ph.D., is asking as part of her research into smoking cessation therapy. As senior scientist and head of the Pharmacogenetics Lab in the Campbell Family Mental Health Research Institute at University of Toronto, Dr. Tyndale is using molecular genetics, pharmacokinetics and pharmacogenomics to better understand differences in medication toxicity and response. Her team is exploring how a person’s genes impact addiction and drug response to develop better, individualized therapies for people who want to quit smoking.

Dr. Rachel Tyndale

As a plenary speaker at this year’s Individualizing Medicine Conference, Dr. Tyndale will share her research in her presentation Pharmacogenomic Optimization of Smoking Cessation. Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine will host the conference on Oct. 9-10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

This year’s conference also features many other opportunities to learn about pharmacogenomics, an area of precision medicine that has made great strides in individualizing patient care for many conditions. Here are highlights from this year’s program:

Pharmacogenomics: Practical Approach for the Healthcare Team

This preconference course, held Oct. 7-8, will be taught by Mayo Clinic experts, including Richard Weinshiilboum, M.D., Eric Matey, Pharm.D., R.Ph., and Wayne Nicholson, M.D., Pharm. D., who are leaders in bringing pharmacogenomics into clinical practice. Participants will learn:

  • How to use guidelines to make specific prescribing decisions for patient care when genetic information is available
  • Identify key principles for incorporating pharmacogenomics into clinical practice
  • How pharmacogenomics recommendations are tailored to treat conditions such as heart disease, cancer, depression, anxiety and pain management
  • Areas where preemptive genetic testing is used on healthy people before they have a medical problem
  • What pharmacogenomics tests are currently available for use in clinical practice

Pharmacogenomics: From Sequencing to the Clinic

Moderated by Liewei Wang, M.D., Ph.D., this conference session will feature:

  • Steve Scherer, Ph.D., professor, Department of Molecular and Human Genetics at Baylor College of Medicine
  • J. Steven Leeder, Pharm.D., Ph.D., Marion Merrell Dow/Missouri Endowed Chair in Pediatric Clinical Pharmacology and director, Division of Clinical Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutic Innovation at Children’s Mercy Kansas City
  • Suzette Bielinski, Ph.D.. associate professor of Epidemiology at Mayo Clinic

The topics to be discussed include:

  • The advantages, disadvantages and challenges of different methods of preemptive pharmacogenomics testing
  • Results from the Mayo RIGHT preemptive pharmacogenomics study with 1013 patients
  • The unique challenges and opportunities of implementing pharmacogenomics in caring for children

Pharmacogenomics CME courses for clinicians and pharmacists:

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Hear the experts listed above and many others discuss the latest research in precision medicine and how it can be applied to improve diagnosis and treatment for many conditions at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine is hosting the conference with support from the Jackson Family Foundation.

 

 

 

 

 

Fri, Jun 30 10:00am · Pharmacogenomics – striving for safer, more effective drugs for you

Karen Daggett

At Mayo Clinic, pharmacogenomics – how your genes impact the way you process medications – is helping doctors to take the guess work out of selecting safer, more effective treatment for patients. Mayo researchers have been leaders in developing DNA tests and identifying drug-gene interactions that affect a patient’s response to many medications, such as pain relievers, antidepressants and cancer therapies.

Through their innovative work in the RIGHT 10K study, Mayo researchers are pioneering ways to add the DNA test results to a patient’s electronic medical record. The goal is to be proactive, so doctors receive recommendations when choosing a medication that could have a drug-gene interaction. This enables doctors to select the right drug and dose for each patient. For example, based on their genetic characteristics, some patients may need a larger dose of a drug, while others need a smaller dose or should avoid a medication to prevent harmful, life threatening side effects.

Mayo’s leadership role in bringing pharmacogenomics to patients is generating national news attention. See NBC’s coverage about Mayo Clinic’s ground breaking efforts and how that impacted patient Karen Daggett and her family.

Learn more about the impact of pharmacogenomics in patient care

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Join us to hear leading experts in precision medicine at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics. The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

This year’s conference will include many sessions on pharmacogenomics, including:

  • Pharmacogenomics: From Sequencing to the Clinic
  • Pharmacogenomic Optimization of Smoking Cessation
  • Personalized Pain Management

Pharmacogenomics CME courses for clinicians and pharmacists:

For more information:

Join our community

Follow the latest news related to the conference on the Center for Individualized Medicine blogFacebookLinkedIn or Twitter at @MayoClinicCIM and use hashtag #CIMCon17.

Tue, Jun 27 10:57am · TOGETHER trial – a personalized approach to detect, treat organ rejection

For physicians caring for patients after kidney transplantation, it’s a balancing act. They need to select the right immunosuppressant drug and dosage to enable the patient’s immune system to accept the new kidney, but allow it to fight other unwanted infections. Physicians also want to reduce potential side effects from these immunosuppression medications, which can include damage to the transplanted kidney, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and liver damage. In a new study, Mayo Clinic physicians are using genomic analysis to monitor the patient’s immune system and determine if rejection is imminent. The trial offers an individualized approach to maintaining the long term function of the new kidney, helping patients live longer, healthier lives.

Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, Transplant Genomics Inc., and investigators from the transplant programs at all three Mayo Clinic campuses in Minnesota, Florida and Arizona, are collaborating in the TOGETHER trial. The trial is using a newly developed blood test to measure the activity of a patient’s immune system and look for changes that could lead to organ rejection.

Dr. Mark Stegall

“Genomic analysis of blood can reveal early signs of organ rejection. This new diagnostic test allows us to monitor for rejection more frequently than is possible with invasive screening such as a biopsy. Our goal is to use genomic test results, along with other clinical measures, to detect and treat organ rejection sooner, allowing the new kidney to function properly. The test will allow physicians to monitor for rejection closely as immunosuppression is decreased over time ,” says Mark D. Stegall, M.D., the James C. Masson Professor of Surgery, and the lead investigator  for the study.

Subsequent phases of the trial will develop diagnostic tests to guide therapy for patients who have had a heart or liver transplant.

Raymond Heilman, M.D.  and Martin Mai, M.D., are also investigators for the trial, which includes patients at all three Mayo campuses.

Learn more about the collaboration.

Register for the 2017 Individualizing Medicine Conference

Learn more about precision medicine and how it can be applied to improve diagnosis and treatment for many conditions at Individualizing Medicine 2017: Advancing Care Through Genomics.

The Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine, is hosting the sixth annual genomics conference, October 9–10, in Rochester, Minnesota.

 

Contact Us · Privacy Policy