Pharmacogenomics: an overview with special emphasis on high altitude related maladies and medicinal plant products

Pragati Saxena*, Sudershan Kumar, Himani Singh


Pharmacogenomics is a branch of science which has emerged from the ever increasing interaction between pharmacology and genomics. It holds the promise of making individualized medicine based on person’s own genetic makeup. Diseases, their occurrences and cure are very individualistic and follow a pattern of inheritance. In that same drug against same disease behaves differently in different individuals. Pharmacogenetics/genomics however, gives us a system to understand and examine the single gene interaction with drugs and likelihood of affectedness of an individual in the backdrop of unique genetic patterns. While pharmacogenomics uses large scale genome wide approaches to look at patient`s response to applied drug, with latest developments, it is possible to screen not only a number of genes simultaneously but also to study multiple gene interactions with drugs. Pharmacogenomics thus seems to knock at the door of personalized medicine which may be considered as the gateway to future medicine. Phamacogenomics holds the promise of tailoring the concept of generalized medicine to one man one prescription approach. This article is intended to understand the concept of pharmacogenomics, response of genetic constitutions to individual drugs, interaction between drugs and genes or gene products and a few success stories thereof, with special hints towards its benefits and future challenges. It also highlights the direction of future pharmacogenomics in relation to medicinal plant products and high altitude related maladies which remains largely an unexplored area.


Alleles; Gene therapy; Pharmacogenetics; Pharmacogenomics; Polymorphism; SNPs.

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