July 2014

29 July 2014

Director’s Blog

We are at a pivotal point in the history of genomic medicine, however, urges Director Dr Hilary Burton, we should not cast aside all that has been achieved to date.
Genomic medicine: evolution or revolution?

Opinion of the month

PHG Foundation Policy Adviser Lucia von Bredow considers how to ensure that the 100,000 Genomes Project and related developments include the right measures to properly embed genomics throughout the UK health service.
We need to talk about genomics: delivering a legacy for the NHS

Genomic and personalised medicine

In the US, New York State invests heavily in resources to support genomic medicine whilst a new report claims that more action is needed to prepare for personalised medicine. In the UK, two new resources from the PHG Foundation examine the importance of patient pathways and bioinformaticians. 
New York aims to be world leader in genomic medicine
Policy and health profession must adapt to personalised medicine
The impact of genomic sequencing technologies on patient pathways
Why genomic medicine needs bioinformaticians

Infectious disease

Infectious diseases have been a major issue for the UK this month; both the high profile new Longitude Prize and a new collaborative programme seek to address antimicrobial drug resistance and public health applications of genomics come under the spotlight.
Tackling antibiotic resistance is Longitude Prize goal
Unique collaboration of research councils to tackle antimicrobial resistance
Can healthcare associated infections ever be eliminated?
Public Health England focus on infectious disease genomics

Policy and regulation

China has dominated the headlines; BGI has received approval for NIPT testing in China and is looking to the UK market, whilst Illumina has its sights on China. Meanwhile the UK pushes forward on legalising 3-person IVF and appoints the first ever minister with a shared portfolio of science and health, whilst Australia worries that a legal loophole is allowing the sale of ineffective and even unsafe stem cell treatments.
China approves non-invasive prenatal tests from BGI
BGI creates UK alliances to boost industrial genomics applications
Illumina takes on BGI in battle for Chinese NIPT market
New UK Minister for Life Sciences to bridge science and health
UK presses ahead with plans to legalise 3-person IVF
Concern over unproven stem cell therapies in Australia

Genetic testing and screening

Potential applications of new research this month show broad ranging potential for personalised prevention, diagnosis and treatment via genomics, from prediction of cardiovascular disease, cancer and even miscarriage risk to responses to radiotherapy.
Genetic screening could reduce recurrent miscarriages
Gene variants predict response to cancer radiotherapy
Genetic variant increases cardiovascular disease risk
Prospects for blood test to predict breast cancer risk

Research news

Psychiatric genomics is in the headlines this month with a mass of new genes associated with schizophrenia and a cash boost for research. Novel genetic insights into autism and a form of breast cancer have been published and prospects for a blood test for early stage Alzheimer’s disease raised. Finally, a new epigenetic method holds promise for environmental genomic assessment. New epigenetic mapping method for single cells
Schizophrenia: A complex multi-system genetic disorder?
$650 million cash injection for psychiatric biology research
New research points to genetic stratification of autism
New genetic cause of common breast tumours identified
Early detection of Alzheimer's a step closer?
New epigenetic mapping method for single cells