AHRQ

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – A key subcommittee in the US House of Representatives has agreed on a bill that would keep the budget for the National Institutes of Health flat at $30.6 billion in 2013.

Industry observers have noted that the move from the outspoken Billy Tauzin, also known as the "Swamp Fox," to an insider business lobbyist-type like Castellani represents a shift in PhRMA's advocacy style. Where that leaves PhRMA's support for personalized medicine, a pet cause of Tauzin's, is hard to determine in the post-healthcare-reform climate in Washington.

According to Woodcock, comparative effectiveness research and personalized medicine can come together in conducting community-based research. But for that, the US research infrastructure needs to be improved.

Speaking at a conference hosted by the Personalized Medicine Coalition, Clancy emphasized that AHRQ is in the business of conducting research, not setting healthcare policy. As such, the agency will continue to investigate personalized medicine interventions to inform the work of the CDC and EGAPP.

Studies on genomically defined subpopulations that would advance personalized medicine are "going to get lost in the wash by considering everybody equivalent, which we know they are not," Collins said at a colloquium on personalized medicine hosted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

"We need to be mindful of the goal of comparative effectiveness research and not lose all that we have gained in understanding how individuals differ and how that could be factored into better diagnostics and preventive strategies," Collins said at a colloquium on personalized medicine hosted by AAAS.

AHRQ will fund around ten grants cover research that includes pharmacogenetic and personalized medicine studies.

The director of CDC's Office of Public Health Genomics detailed GAPPNet's plans to close the hole in translational research and discussed how "the stars are aligning" in healthcare reform to further drive the integration of genomics and personalized medicine into clinical practice.

A federal council's recognition of the role of studying patient subgroups in comparative effectiveness research increases the chance that personalized medicine initiatives will be a key feature of healthcare reform, government officials and industry observers said.

The authors of the report recommend conducting randomized trials with "sufficiently large sample sizes and long-term follow-up," in addition to other types of research to determine whether genetic testing in patients with a history of blood clots improves outcomes and whether physicians should alter current treatment practices to adopt genetic testing for the prevention of deep-vein thrombosis.

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A fire at a Manchester hospital may have destroyed lab equipment and data, the Guardian reports.

Researchers generate a genetic database from skeletal remains from the 1845 Franklin Expedition to the Arctic, Live Science reports.

Researchers in China have begun another trial using CRISPR/Cas9 approaches in cancer patients, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In Science this week: human DNA found in sediments from archeological sites lacking bones, and more.