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FORUM Sir Colin Dollery Lecture 2022: Pharmacogenomics, personalisation and public health

14.00, Thursday 13 October 2022

Online / Victoria Gallery & Museum Liverpool

The 2022 FORUM Sir Colin Dollery Lecture was given by Professor Dan Roden, Senior Vice President of Personalised Medicine at Vanderbilt University. He discussed the public health implications of pharmacogenomics. The Lecture was followed by a panel discussion chaired by Professor Sir Munir Pirmohamed FMedSci, which brought together patient, industry, healthcare, and academic representatives to explore ethical, accessibility and economic impacts of pharmacogenomics.


The full report can be found on the right of this page.


Pharmacogenomics combines pharmacology – the science of drugs – with genomics – the study of the genome and its functions. Its aim is to use information about a person’s genomic make-up to identify the most effective treatment for them, to minimise side effects and find the ideal dosage.

Pharmacogenomics not only presents benefits to the individual; these also translate to wider societal benefits such as reduced pressure on the healthcare system, reduced costs and improved cost effectiveness.

However, there are potential risks to implementing pharmacogenomics in the healthcare system. It can be challenging to prove cost effectiveness and gain regulatory approval. The data on which pharmacogenomic interventions are based are often not representative of the diversity of the population in terms of ethnicity and sometimes gender, so there is a risk that conclusions drawn about pharmacogenomics are not applicable to these groups. These factors and the difficulty of ensuring uniform access to genetic testing need to be carefully considered and mitigated for to avoid worsening health inequalities.

The first ever FORUM Annual Lecture in 2003 also focussed on pharmacogenomics, exploring early developments in personalised safety and segmented efficacy. Nearly 20 years on, the 2022 Lecture looked at the clinical impact that some of these innovations are now having, as well as the next generation breakthroughs in the field. 

The Lecture took place as a 'hybrid' seminar, both online and in-person, at 14.00 on Thursday 13 October at the Victoria Gallery & Museum in Liverpool, and was followed by a drinks reception from 17.00. The Lecture was free to attend and open to all. It was preceded by an in-person lunchtime session on the clinical implementation of pharmacogenomics.

For more information please e-mail [email protected].

The FORUM Sir Colin Dollery Lecture is named in honor of Sir Colin Dollery FMedSci. In his role as Treasurer in 2003, Sir Colin was instrumental in the creation of the FORUM.

This Lecture was organised through the Academy’s FORUM programme, which provides a neutral and independent platform for individuals from across academia, industry, the NHS and Government, and the wider healthcare sector, to meet and discuss opportunities, technology trends and strategic choices for healthcare.

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