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The Way Medicine Is Going

It's personalized medicine's time in the spotlight as it has garnered support both from the State of California and the White House, writes the San Diego Union-Tribune. While it notes that this support hasn't come with large amounts of funding, it has given the field "a stamp of approval, indicating that this was the direction healthcare would take."

But, the Union-Tribune adds, there's still a lot of work to be done in the field, and a lot of it comes down to economics. "Can the government, hospitals, physicians, drug companies, scientists and others take advantage of precision medicine to control medical costs while raising the quality of care?" it says. At the Precision Medicine Leaders Summit sponsored by the Journal of Precision Medicine, the paper says that theme ran through the speeches and panels.

Still, researchers are hopeful that genomic and other approaches will change how diseases like cancer are treated, despite the "frustration" of "uneven progress" there. New drugs are being developed to target specific genetic variants while existing drugs are being tested to see if they have an effect in other types of cancers. Razelle Kurzrock from the University of California, San Diego, and CureMatch said at the summit that this is promising approach, but that it needs to overcome the status quo.

"We've built this enormous way of doing things that we've been doing for decades, and the science is saying we need to do things differently," she says.