detect a future disease before you have it

Being able to detect and even prevent a genetic disease before suffering from it. It is one of the possibilities offered by the genomic medicine with which you are working Navarrabiomedwhich this afternoon has organized a day to publicize the program NAGENpioneer at the state level.

Led by the public biomedical research center together with the Navarra University HospitalNAGEN is a strategic program, financed by the Department of Economic and Business Development of the Government of Navarra, to implement genome analysis in the clinical practice of the Navarra Health Service-Osasunbidea (SNS-O).

The medical challenges of the future require promoting personalized and precision medicine, and the most disruptive change comes from knowledge of the genetic profile of each person for, depending on their individual characteristics, adjust the most appropriate health care, at the right time, according to their health or illness. It is a path in which each patient is at the center and in which research and collaboration are key in the health ecosystem.

This has been pointed out by the Minister of Health, Santos Indurain, during the institutional opening. Induráin has highlighted the importance of sharing experiences, achievements and difficulties in the progressive advance towards personalized medicine “to improve the assistance provided to the patient, contribute to a more rational use of health resources and favor the sustainability of the public health system ”. In addition, he has stated that “the NAGEN program has positioned Navarra at the forefront of this methodology at the state level, and can be an important instrument of regional development since it promotes biomedical research and explores a new area of ​​industrial development”.

For her part, the director of Navarrabiomed, Maite Mendioroz, has underlined “the need for research and clinical care to be well interconnected. This bidirectional transfer is necessary to put the patient in the center of the investigation, and thus ensure that research activity has a direct impact on people’s quality of life”.

Mendioroz has also dedicated a few words of thanks to patients, patient associations, center staff, and public health professionals “that allow initiatives like NAGEN to leave the laboratory and be applied in consultations”.

Experts and patients share their testimony

Following this, a discussion table moderated by Angel Alonsohead of the Navarrabiomed Genomic Medicine Unit, who explained the beginnings of the program that began in 2016 with the project NAGEN1000dedicated to the diagnosis of rare diseases: “The success of this first project led us to expand its field of application to other sectors such as pharmacological prescription, familial hypercholesterolemia, rapid diagnosis for the management of boys and girls in acute severe clinical situations, or the prevention of breast cancer”. The colloquium that has brought together patients, relatives of patients and genetic counselors in the same forum has revolved around these issues.

Ángel Alonso, head of the Navarrabiomed Genomic Medicine Unit. NEWS DAILY

During the conversation, special emphasis was placed on the usefulness of the complete study of the genome to obtain an accurate diagnosis in cases of disease in which there is no specific clinical suspicion, the possibility of obtaining secondary findings that allow establishing preventive controls in diseases such as breast cancer, the genetic study in direct relatives or the secondary reuse of genomic data for clinical and research purposes.

The Associations of Patients in Navarra have also played a prominent role in the conference, represented by Maria Jose Oraa, president of Saray. According to Oraá “through the empowerment of the patient, the quality of health care can be considerably improved. In this sense, andhe study of the genome allows us to know each patient individually, we do not cure the disease, but rather we understand that specific patient”. The president of Saray has referred to knowledge and research as levers for better health, and recalled the role played by patient associations, with a long history behind them in social awareness, dissemination and disease prevention.

Scientific conference for clinical and research staff

The talk-colloquium has brought to an end the conference organized by Navarrabiomed under the title The potential of Genomic Medicine in public health care in Navarra, which has also included a scientific session this morning at the University Hospital of Navarra, aimed at clinical and research staff. The meeting has analyzed the present and future of the NAGEN program, and has had the participation of John Cruz CigudosaCouncilor for University, Innovation and Digital Transformation.

During his speech at the scientific conference of the NAGEN program, the councilor Cigudosa, has valued the progress of Personalized Medicine in the Foral Community in recent years with the support of the Government of Navarra.

The development of this Medicine, the Minister pointed out, “is a firm commitment for this Government because it not only improves patient care, but also promotes scientific-technological research and stimulates economic development, turning the Autonomous Community into a leading region in this matter”. And he has encouraged clinical staff to become aware of what is coming: “Navarra is leading the concepts and needs in the field of precision medicine in our country. We have to take advantage of this moment that depends a lot on the health professionals to make it a success”.

The NAGEN program consists of 6 projects that will be sequenced nearly 3,500 genomes in Navarra in 9 years, and is one of the most ambitious initiatives in this field at European level. The program has been awarded by the International Consortium of Personalized Medicine ICPerMed, with the award for Best Practice in Personalized Medicine in the 2018 and 2021 editions.

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