16.11.2021 | Review Article
Precision medicine in trauma: a transformational frontier in patient care, education, and research
Christopher Stephen Davis, Katheryn Hope Wilkinson, Emily Lin, Nathaniel James Carpenter, Christina Georgeades, Gwen Lomberk, Raul Urrutia
European Journal of Trauma and Emergency Surgery
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Trauma is the leading cause of death before the age of 45 in the United States. Precision medicine (PM) is the most advanced scientific form of medical practice and seeks to gather data from the genome, environmental interactions, and lifestyles. Relating to trauma, PM promises to significantly advance our understanding of the factors that contribute to the physiologic response to injury.
We review the status of PM-driven trauma care. Semantic-based methods were used to gather data on genetic/epigenetic variability previously linked to the principal causes of trauma-related outcomes. Data were curated to include human investigations involving genomics/epigenomics with clinical relevance identifiable early after injury.
Most studies relevant to genomic/epigenomic differences in trauma are specific to traumatic brain injury and injury-related sepsis. Genomic/epigenomic differences rarely encompass other relevant factors, such as coagulability and pharmacogenomics. Few studies describe clinical use of genomics/epigenomics for therapeutic intervention in trauma care, and even fewer attempt to incorporate real-time genomic/epigenomic information to precisely guide clinical decision-making.
Considering that genomics/epigenomics, environmental exposures, and lifestyles are most likely to be of significant medical relevance in advancing the field of trauma, the lack of application of concepts and methodologies from PM to trauma education, research, practice, and community wellness is underwhelming. We suggest that significant effort be given to incorporate the tools of what is becoming the “new medicine”.