Patient Care Situations Benefiting from Pharmacogenomic Testing

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Purpose of Review Pharmacogenomics is an evolving area in precision medicine that aims to identify patients who have variable drug response, detect those at risk for developing adverse events, and guide drug dosing. Guidelines for optimization of PGx testing are available for a number of drug-gene pairs, and evidence supporting the clinical utility of this service is growing in specific patient contexts. This report reviews a variety of patient care situations in which evidence is emerging to show patient benefit from pharmacogenomic (PGx) testing.

Recent Findings Preemptive PGx testing minimizes delays in treatment, reducing costs and time to therapeutic effect; however, preemptive testing is currently not feasible in all healthcare settings. Therefore, specific patient care situations that could benefit from PGx testing to be prioritized include medications requiring PGx testing, adverse drug reactions, therapeutic failures, polypharmacy, special populations, and specialty care settings such as cardiology, oncology, and psychiatry.

Summary Although preemptive PGx testing is likely the best option for patient care, implementation challenges are impeding its uptake. PGx testing is beneficial and more feasible in certain patient situations and may be a starting point for implementation of PGx testing in a care setting. Continued efforts to evaluate patient and provider use and outcomes of PGx testing services will be helpful in informing the current evidence base and standard of care.