|After the death of her young son, Jeralyn Predmore (bottom) and her extended family, including her two daughters, Jillian (middle) and Allison (top), were tested for the genetic mutation that causes Long QT syndrome, the condition that led to her son's death.|
Ohio State takes the lead in personalized health care
Jeralyn Predmore's father recalls running through the fields of his family farm as a child, passing out and then waking up. While he didn't know then what was causing these episodes, he knows now. And so does the rest of his extended family. Unfortunately, that knowledge came with the death of one of his grandsons, Predmore's son Zachary.
Zachary passed away suddenly in 1991 at the age of eight. Following his death, doctors discovered that he suffered from Long QT syndrome, a heart rhythm disorder that can potentially cause fast, chaotic heartbeats. The rapid heartbeats can lead to fainting and in some cases sudden death. Because Long QT syndrome is frequently the result of specific genetic mutations, doctors at Ohio State's Richard M. Ross Heart Hospital recommended genetic testing for Predmore and her family.
Predmore, now 60 and a resident of Galion, was tested at Ohio State, as were her husband and two daughters. Predmore was the only one with the genetic mutation. Doctors then recommended that her extended family be tested. Two of her six siblings, one niece, one nephew and her father all tested positive. All now are under the care of cardiologists.
CARING FOR YOU
Predmore's diagnosis and care are all possible because of advances made in personalized health care. Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center is a leader in this new focus of healthcare delivery.
"While today we might lump everyone with high blood pressure under one umbrella, there's more than likely 10 to 20 causes of high blood pressure. By specifying those causes more precisely, we might be able to offer a much more specific treatment," says Clay Marsh, MD, executive director of the OSU Center for Personalized Health Care and vice dean for Research at the College of Medicine. "We also want to personalize every prevention strategy, so as we go forth, we hope to transform the cure of medicine from waiting until the disease happens to being smart enough to predict and prevent the disease from ever clinically affecting that patient."
When Linda Craig was diagnosed with breast cancer, she agreed to participate in a clinical trial at Ohio State, knowing that her involvement could help lead to better treatments for other women, including her two daughters, Larrinda and Lakisha.
Personalized health care is only possible through advances in medical research. Linda Craig, 62, who lives in Columbus, says that helping others is the reason she entered a clinical trial at Ohio State's Comprehensive Cancer Center — Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute after being diagnosed with breast cancer.
"I felt a strong need to participate in the study because I have two grown daughters, and if I could save them from going through what I had to go through, then I wanted to do that," Craig says. "There's no way we'll ever find out about new treatments unless people step to the plate and participate in research."
Breast cancer is one area in which significant strides have been made in personalized medicine. Once considered one disease, it is now segmented into several different types, each with its own treatment plan. While chemotherapy was once common for all women with breast cancer, research has proven that for some it is not necessary. It's these kinds of advances that excite researchers and keep the focus on personalized medicine in sight.
Read more stories about how personalized health care at Ohio State's Medical Center has made a difference in the lives of other patients.
SPOTLIGHT ON PERSONALIZED HEALTH CARE
Ohio State's Medical Center, along with the Institute for Systems Biology, is a founding member of the P4 Medicine Institute. The Institute is the country's only nonprofit research organization dedicated to accelerating the emergence and adoption of health care that is predictive, preventive, personalized and participatory—P4 Medicine.
The Institute's goal is to bring together resources and capabilities from industrial, academic, federal and public sector entities that share a common interest in developing and implementing personalized medicine.
As the emphasis of health care shifts to prediction and prevention, health and wellness and engagement and empowerment, the P4 Medicine Institute will adopt strategies to transform health care so that it costs less, provides higher-quality outcomes and yields better patient satisfaction.
Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center will serve as the clinical demonstration site to the P4 Medical Institute's pilot projects to test collaborative and innovative ideas and technologies that will transform the healthcare industry.
Through this partnership, Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center will have access to new resources, innovations and funding to further our mission of improving people's lives through personalized health care. And the central Ohio community will be the first in the country to experience a predictive, preventive, personalized and participatory model of care.