Following Genetic Clues to Enhance Preventive Care
Brigham and Women’s Hospital launched the Preventive Genomics Clinic, the world’s first academically affiliated clinical service of its kind.
Preventive genomics uses a person’s genetic profile to reduce their risk of disease.
The clinic builds upon two decades of Brigham and Women’s research supporting the use of DNA sequencing in day-to-day medical care.
At the clinic, patients first meet with a board-certified medical geneticist and a genetic counselor. The team asks about that patient's personal and family medical history, performs a physical exam, and discusses why the patient is interested in getting genetic testing.
Preventive options range from panels of several dozen genes to genome sequencing with analysis of thousands of genetic health risks. Findings from the tests can help inform screening recommendations, preventive measures, or specialized evaluations. Patients also have the opportunity to join NIH-funded outcomes studies.
We have generated consistent evidence that translational genomics offers many potential medical benefits. It’s time for this technology to be offered in a clinical context, under the care of genetics experts, to people who want to be proactive about their health.