In DepthBiomedicine

NIH opens precision medicine study to nation

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Science  25 Sep 2015:
Vol. 349, Issue 6255, pp. 1433
DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6255.1433

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Next year, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) expects to begin recruiting at least 1 million people for what may become the world's largest study of how genes influence disease risks and drug responses. Plans for the study came into focus last week with the release of a blueprint from a panel of human geneticists, medical researchers, and other experts. It urged that NIH recruit participants not only through academic medical centers and health care organizations, but also by issuing an open invitation to anyone living in the United States. For NIH Director Francis Collins, the project, known as the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Cohort Program, brings to fruition an idea he first proposed 11 years ago. But whether NIH can design and effectively manage such a massive endeavor remains an open question.