More than 90 percent of the U.S. population has at least one genetic variation that affects their response to medication. The same medication dose may be effective for one person, have no effect for another, and may cause harm to a third person.
Wouldn’t you want to know how you will respond to a medication before taking it?
Until now, it has been impossible to do anything more than make an educated guess about what medications will be most effective for any individual patient.
StoneView Lab Services, the West Chester-based company, is a leader in pharmacogenomics, which combines the science of how drugs work (pharmacology) with the science of the human genome (genomics).
StoneView offers pharmacogenomic (PGx) testing to determine how individuals will uniquely respond to medications. This is an area of precision medicine that defies the antiquated trial-and-error approach while improving care and lowering pharmacy costs.
StoneView’s PGx test is a tool that enables providers to prescribe the right medication at the right dose for the right patient. The test also identifies medications that may be harmful and should be avoided.
“We believe an individual should know how they will react to a medication before they take it, not after,” said CEO and President Thomas P. Shivers. “Pharmacogenomic testing contributes to the avoidance of adverse drug reactions. This in turn contributes to the avoidance of increased healthcare costs and harmful complications that affect quality of life.”
Consumers can purchase the test kit from StoneView, then set up an appointment with their primary doctor to administer it. The doctor will sign off and send it back to StoneView, and the patient will revisit his or her doctor once the doctor has received the results from StoneView.
“This is important because we do not want the patient processing this information on their own,” said Shivers. “We want the results going back to the doctor, so that they can explain next steps for medications.”
With just a swab of the inside of a patient’s cheek, StoneView’s PGx test will report:
- Medications that are the most safe and effective for you
- Identify the appropriate medication dosage levels to reach optimal efficacy
- Medications that should be avoided, because they may be ineffective, harmful (cause ADRs or Adverse Drug Reactions), or potentially life threatening, even at a normal recommended dosage
- How drugs will interact with each other and whether these interactions will reduce drug efficacy, cause ADRs, or prove life threatening
Pharmacogenomics is already a part of routine clinical care in many academic centers (e.g. Mayo Clinic, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, University of Florida, Vanderbilt University, Moffitt Cancer Center, etc.) and community health systems. The FDA has updated the label of more than 250 drugs to include pharmacogenetic information and the list continues to grow.
Since genetics do not change, the valuable information gained from PGx testing is valid for a patient’s lifetime.
“Our test is not the same as at-home tests offered by companies like 23andMe,” said Shivers. “Those are not intended to be used to make health or medication-related decisions.”
Click here to learn more about StoneView Lab Services and its pharmacogenomic testing.