Genetic testing to guide cancer treatment is making its way into patient care, the North Jersey Record reports.
Through such testing, clinician are beginning to tailor patients' care, not only in cancer but in other fields as well, so that they receive a drug at dose that is mostly likely to benefit them. In addition to cancer, the Record notes that such a pharmacogenomic approach has been pursued to prescribe statins, psychiatric drugs, and pain medications.
In cancer, it writes that some patients harbor a genetic alteration that leads them to lack DFD, which makes them unable to metabolize the chemotherapy drug fluorouracil. According to the Record, France and the Netherlands recommend genetic screening for DFD-deficiency in combination with a blood test, but the US does not currently recommend testing. The Mayo Clinic's Robert Diasio tells the Record that genetic testing for DFD-deficiency doesn't currently identify all people with the condition as is only focuses on known mutations. He adds that he and his colleagues are conducting a study of 10,000 Minnesotans to better understand the influence of genetic alterations on drug response.