FORUM symposium on 'Stratified, personalised or P4 medicine'

On 12 May 2015, the Academy of Medical Sciences’ FORUM, in partnership with the Medical Research Council, Science Europe and the University of Southampton, held a symposium on ‘Stratified, personalised or P4[1] medicine: a new direction for placing the patient at the centre of healthcare and health education’. The aims of this meeting were to:

  • Consider how the concept of stratified medicines can be applied across the spectrum of diseases, from cancer to rare diseases.
  • Examine the issues of implementing stratified medicine in healthcare settings.
  • Look to the future in preparing the healthcare community to embrace this new approach to therapy, including its incorporation into medical education.

Over 100 delegates from across Europe, spanning academia, industry, healthcare providers, regulatory and funding bodies, assembled for a day of talks and discussion. Professor Sir John Tooke PMedSci, President of the Academy of Medical Sciences, opened the symposium with an introduction to the Academy’s 2013 report, ‘Realising the potential of stratified medicine’, which highlighted several challenges in implementing this evolving approach. The subsequent talks expanded on these challenges and considered recent developments in data integration and informatics, capacity building, diagnostic development and education. It was proposed that a paradigm shift in the structure and regulation of healthcare might be needed, to be underpinned by a new ‘social contract’ between the medical innovation system and the public. In addition, work from the 100,000 Genomes project, the Farr Institute in Scotland and the EU IMI initiative was presented, alongside projects looking to explore stratified medicines in the fields of cancer, the early life environment, asthma and rare diseases.

Throughout the day, posters were exhibited to showcase work by the MRC Stratified Medicine Consortia and by clinicians and academics from the University of Southampton and University Hospital Southampton.

The symposium highlighted several key challenges that remain to be addressed if the potential of P4 medicine is to be realised. These include the need to:

  • Better incentivise and reward the development of this approach;
  • Further integrate and share information and knowledge;
  • Promote interdisciplinary collaboration;
  • More closely align medical education and training to the needs of the modern healthcare system; and
  • Encourage and ensure societal acceptance of emerging technologies and approaches.

A full report of the symposium will be published in due course.


The Academy of Medical Sciences’ FORUM was established in 2003 to recognise the role of industry in medical research, and to catalyse connections across industry and academia. Since then, a range of FORUM activities and events have brought together researchers, research funders and research users from across academia, industry, government, and the charity, healthcare and regulatory sectors. Further information and details of future events can be found on the FORUM homepage

[1] P4: predictive, preventive, personalised, and participatory medicine


Meet the President - Cambridge

Book Now

Meet the President - Edinburgh

Book Now

Mentoring Masterclass - September 2024

Book Now
View more
FB Twitter Instagram Youtube