Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine
The Raabe College of Pharmacy continues its commitment to keeping students and the pharmacy profession on the leading edge of scientific and medical advances by focusing on pharmacogenomics education. Within its curriculum and beyond, the college connects the newest information regarding genetic variation (in how people “handle” and are affected by drugs) to the practice of pharmacy. The college is leading the way by integrating pharmacogenomics into medication therapy management (MTM). Integration is part of a spring semester course for fifth-year students and practicing pharmacists that are working toward MTM certification. Pharmacogenomics and personalized medicine are the future of the pharmacy profession, and Ohio Northern is once again at the forefront of educating pharmacy students and pharmacists alike.
“We are the only school of pharmacy to put a six-year emphasis on pharmacogenetic training,” says Dr. Jon E. Sprague, dean of the college. “Our pharmacy curriculum includes a broad approach to pharmacogenomics and personalized medicine. Students are introduced to pharmacogenomics, the influence of genetic variation on drug action and personalized medicine in their first semester at ONU.”
Subsequently, students learn the science and application as they look at their own DNA to identify the activity of a specific drug-metabolizing enzyme. These applications are expanded throughout the curriculum as students study specific therapeutic areas and learn about the ever-expanding number of drugs for which genetic variation plays a significant role.
A team of faculty members is working with a major publisher to make available a student-focused textbook that integrates current science and practice with the burgeoning subject matter of pharmacogenomics. The group offers continuing pharmacy education opportunities, and provides in-print and live presentations. Importantly, the college works with state and national organizations to bring pharmacogenomics and personalized medicine, as part of MTM, to practicing pharmacists.
“Personalized Medicine refers to the tailoring of medical treatment to the individual characteristics of each patient … to classify individuals into subpopulations that differ in their susceptibility to a particular disease or their response to a specific treatment. Preventative or therapeutic interventions can then be concentrated on those who will benefit, sparing expense and side effects for those who will not.” — President’s Council on Advisors on Science and Technology
“High on the list of breakthroughs expected to transform medicine is personalized medicine – the use of new methods of molecular analysis to better manage a patient’s disease or predisposition to disease. Personalized medicine is likely to change the way drugs are developed and medicine is prescribed.” — Personalized Medicine Coalition