Genome Centre’s information day explains the benefit of our genetic data
On 14 June at 15:00 the Genome Centre’s information day is held in the assembly hall of the University of Tartu, where experts explain what can be done with genetic data and how the data gathered in the course of research study can become valuable for ordinary people.
Nearly 5% of the Estonian adult population, i.e. 52,000 people have trusted their data with the Estonian Genome Centre, thereby hoping to contribute to the development of science, but also to gain some useful information about their health in return. While until 2011, the main objective of the Genome Centre was to create the extensive database and conduct research based on the data in order to find associations between human genome variants and the phenotype – incl. diseases; this year the centre started a major project which enables to complete the genotyping of all gene donors.
“On the basis of the database, personal gene cards are prepared for gene donors, creating new opportunities for evaluating personal health risks and explaining them to participants who have expressed such request. Analysing the person’s genetic data and involving data on the environment, health behaviour and common diseases, it is possible to prepare an optimum disease prevention or treatment plan for each person. For example, gene data help doctors to select the most suitable drug for the person from similar alternatives and establish the proper dosage, as each person reacts somewhat differently to medications. Knowing our hereditary risks, we can alter our health behaviour so as to be able to reduce such risks,” said Annely Allik, Manager of Communication of Estonian Genome Centre.
The information day offers presentations by Professor Andres Metspalu, who introduces the project “Feedback to Gene Donor”, and UT senior researchers, who introduce the various areas of the project: medical geneticist Dr Neeme Tõnisson speaks of the benefit of the genetic feedback for people, Dr Krista Fischer observes the hereditary risks of common diseases and Dr Lili Milani explains the relationship between genes and drug unsuitability. UT Senior Research Fellow Elin Org introduces the soon-to-be-launched microbiome project, and Manager of Communication of the Estonian Genome Centre Annely Allik speaks about the possibilities of joining the project. After presentations, everyone is free to ask questions.
All interested are welcome to attend.
Additional information: Annely Allik, Manager of Communication, University of Tartu Estonian Genome Centre, 737 4037, Annely.allik [ät] ut.ee