Individualized Medicine Institute
About the institute
Genes play a key role in how diseases are acquired, how severe they are and the recommended treatment. The role of the Individualized Medicine Institute, led by Ulrich Broeckel, MD, at Children's Research Institute and the Medical College of Wisconsin is to bring genetics to the clinic by:
- Finding the genes related to specific diseases. Some disease genes have known markers. Others have yet to be discovered. These discoveries will help determine early prevention and treatment plans.
- Using current technology and relating it to clinical care. By performing advanced lab analysis on DNA, researchers can translate what they have learned back to physicians for the benefit of patients. This personalized form of medicine can identify how a patient's genes will react to specific drug treatments.
The goal of the institute is to investigate the genes for diseases prevalent in children. Just two years old, the institute already has begun work on diseases such as epilepsy, hemangiomas, inflammatory bowel disease, DiGeorge syndrome, cardiac malformations and others.
Research highlights from the institute
An alliance between Affymetrix and Children's Research Institute is helping researchers screen genetic information in up to 25,000 patients in five years. The screening will help develop tests for common and complex diseases affecting children. The tests also will make diagnosis better, faster and more economical.
Identifying characteristics of genetic diseases enables health care providers to deliver more accurate diagnoses and apply the most appropriate therapies. The information from these tests will be used to help clinicians and families make more informed health care decisions.