Progress towards the integration of pharmacogenomics in practice
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- Mooney, S.D. Hum Genet (2015) 134: 459. doi:10.1007/s00439-014-1484-7
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Understanding the role genes and genetic variants play in clinical treatment response continues to be an active area of research with the goal of common clinical use. This goal has developed into today’s industry of pharmacogenomics, where new drug-gene relationships are discovered and further characterized, published and then curated into national and international resources for use by researchers and clinicians. These efforts have given us insight into what a pharmacogenomic variant is, and how it differs from human disease variants and common polymorphisms. While publications continue to reveal pharmacogenomic relationships between genes and specific classes of drugs, many challenges remain toward the goal of widespread use clinically. First, the clinical guidelines for pharmacogenomic testing are still in their infancy. Second, sequencing technologies are changing rapidly making it somewhat unclear what genetic data will be available to the clinician at the time of care. Finally, what and when to return data to a patient is an area under constant debate. New innovations such as PheWAS approaches and whole genome sequencing studies are enabling a tsunami of new findings. In this review, pharmacogenomic variants, pharmacogenomic resources, interpretation clinical guidelines and challenges, such as WGS approaches, and the impact of pharmacogenomics on drug development and regulatory approval are reviewed.