Over the past decade we’ve come to expect our experiences to be tailored to our specific needs and desires. In what some are calling the era of personalization, more and more industries turn towards customizing their services and products for individual customers in order to get ahead of the competition. According to experts, the trend may soon reach the world of pharmaceuticals as well, as precision medicine gains in popularity.
The switch came with the realization that treatments often aren’t universal, and cannot function on a one-size-fits-all basis, especially in the case of oncology or cardiology. With the developments made in genetic testing, as many as 75% of currently developed cancer treatments include personalized components. Diagnostic tests can be used to analyse the patient’s genetic code not only to identify a disease, but also to decide which form of treatment would be best-suited for the patient. This kind of tailored therapy can help minimize the risk of side-effects, while also improving the overall effectiveness of the chosen treatment method.
In the case of cancer treatments, the most coveted form of treatment personalization comes in the form of Next Generation Sequencing. The technology enables diagnostics to function on a genome-wide scale. By analyzing the entire genetic code in a single test, doctors no longer focus on a specific organ affected by the cancer, and instead look to the molecular characteristics of the cancerous cells. This way, the treatment can target their specific genetic profile and mutations.
As for patients in Poland, they’ll need to wait quite a while before the trend reaches the market. Earlier this month, the Polish Technology Development Center (PORT) has announced their partnership with Roche Polska regarding genomic profiling and biotechnology research in Poland. The partnership could serve as the first step towards the development of genomic databases of cancer patients available to Polish scientists. Such data would provide scientists with a much clearer view of genome sequences, and make searching them easier in the process of identifying genes and mutations responsible for a number of diseases. The tool would also contribute towards the development of brand new treatments due to its comparison and analysis functionalities.
While we’ve still got miles to go before the technology becomes available on a global scale, it has the potential to revolutionize not just the methodology, but also the effectiveness of cancer treatments as we know it.
To find out more about the partnership between Roche Polska and PORT, feel free to check out Roshe’s website.