Review Article | Published:

Building the foundation for genomics in precision medicine

Nature volume 526, pages 336342 (15 October 2015) | Download Citation


Precision medicine has the potential to profoundly improve the practice of medicine. However, the advances required will take time to implement. Genetics is already being used to direct clinical decision-making and its contribution is likely to increase. To accelerate these advances, fundamental changes are needed in the infrastructure and mechanisms for data collection, storage and sharing. This will create a continuously learning health-care system with seamless cycling between clinical care and research. Patients must be educated about the benefits of sharing data. The building blocks for such a system are already forming and they will accelerate the adoption of precision medicine.

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H.L.R. was supported in part by NIH grants U41HG006834, U01HG006500 and U19HD077671. S.J.A. was supported in part by U41HG006834.

Author information


  1. Partners HealthCare Personalized Medicine, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.

    • Samuel J. Aronson
    •  & Heidi L. Rehm
  2. Partners HealthCare Research Information Services and Computing, Charlestown, Massachusetts 02129, USA.

    • Samuel J. Aronson
  3. Department of Pathology, Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.

    • Heidi L. Rehm
  4. Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.

    • Heidi L. Rehm
  5. The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142, USA.

    • Heidi L. Rehm


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Competing interests

S.J.A. and H.L.R. are employees of Partners HealthCare, which is a stockholder of GeneInsight.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Heidi L. Rehm.

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