Personalized medicine stands to transform the world we live in today. Although, what is the difference between the world we live in today and that where Personalized Medicine plays a significant role in the health care system? Great question. The lack of an answer is due to the developments of Personalized Medicine by the government agencies (NIH, CDC, FDA, etc.) along with the pharmaceutical industry.
Any mention of the concept of Personalized Medicine in the pharmaceutical industry is worth taking note of. In a recent article in the trade journal 'Pharmaceutical Technology', a spokesperson for the pharmaceutical giant Amgen commented on the new approach to protein engineering:
"We translate patient needs into protein design requirements during development and engineer in attributes to meet biological performance and molecule stability, which provide improved delivery for desired patient outcomes and improved processing design during manufacturing. Incorporating patient needs into molecule designs starts with a translation of the target product profile into a quality target product profile followed by application of these targets during selection and engineering of molecules. This process enables faster and more efficient advancement of novel and effective therapies to patients while improving the overall patient experience," Stevens explains.
Starting with the patient's needs first during the design process is the language that Personalized Medicine is taking shape at the discovery/production point -- in drug design. The words in the excerpt are encouraging -- the patient is first.
Prior to the change in design methodology, the target was found at the research lab in the university. Which was then passed onto the drug manufacturer as a possible target of interest. The pharmaceutical company then looks at the target and sees if any of their propietary ligands (drug delivery molecules -- parts of them) are suitable to bind to the active site of the target. In the current scheme, the patient's outcome is incorporated at a much earlier stage which is great. The news is exciting for the future of drug design.
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