As this issue goes to press, the country is witnessing the inauguration of new President Barack Obama, who has an established track record of supporting personalized medicine—the topic of this month’s cover story. In his inaugural address, Obama stated: “We will restore science to its rightful place and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its costs.”

During his tenure in the Senate, Obama introduced legislation to coordinate conflicting agency policies on payment for genetic testing and to establish a national “Biobank” designed to serve as a resource data pool for scientific researchers. Obama also proposed a 100% tax credit for private research to develop new diagnostic tests to predict drug safety and efficacy. By targeting specific treatments to those who will truly benefit from them, based on individual genetic characteristics, personalized medicine is expected to save medical costs in the long run while improving the health of US citizens.

According to the Genetic Test Evaluation Services at Hayes Inc, which compiles evidence demonstrating the clinical utility and validity of genetic tests, more than 1,600 genetic tests currently exist. Of these, approximately 1,200 are available today for clinical testing, and the remainder will no doubt rapidly transition from the research domain to the clinical arena, while additional tests continue to be developed. The volume of genetic testing is estimated to have grown more then 25% during the last decade, and regulation of the area will continue to evolve. In addition, the reams of data generated by genetic testing are also changing the way labs handle information flow, which you can read about in this month’s “Inside Track” interview with SCC Soft Computer’s founder and CEO, Gilbert Hakim.

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As always, I welcome your feedback on the industry and our coverage. Please feel free to contact me any time at sclancy or (858) 793-9533, and continue to send your news releases to .

Best regards.

Suzanne Clancy, PhD
editor, CLP

(858) 793-9533