The UK Pharmacogenetics and Stratified Medicine Network is an organisation dedicated to developing research partnerships between academics, healthcare professionals, industry partners, regulatory bodies and the public, to support NHS delivery of stratified medicine to patients.

The network is chaired by Professor Sir Munir Pirmohamed and is supported by a high profile steering committee with representatives from all the key sectors involved in delivering the most appropriate drug treatment to patients. Previously funded by the Department of Health and the Knowledge Transfer Network, the UK Pharmacogenetics and Stratified Medicine Network will now be supported by the Precision Medicine Catapult in its next stage of growth and together the partners will drive the growth of the UK industry.

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What is stratified medicine?

Stratifying (grouping) patients based on their genetic profile, response to a particular drug, or the molecular basis of their disease, rather than the traditional symptoms based approach, has launched a precision, personalised, P4 (participate, predict, prevent, personalise) stratified, medicine approach to drug delivery. This benefits the patient as they receive a more precise drug treatment, personalised at the start of their treatment, at the optimum dose and in the correct combination with other medications, and so delivers improved healthcare outcomes. It also raises safety standards by predicting and preventing adverse drug reactions (ADRs). Since 6% of hospital admissions are a result of ADRs a stratified medicine approach has the potential not only to protect patients but to make significant savings for the NHS. Delivering precision or stratified medicine requires collaboration between hosts of multidisciplinary groups of academics, healthcare professionals, industry partners, regulators and patients. No group can work in isolation; each is dependent on, and benefits from, the expertise of their colleagues. The network provides the opportunity to highlight your expertise to the wider community and forge multidisciplinary partnerships to move research in the field of stratified medicine forward to benefit patients.

Using pharmacogenetics, the study of inherited genetic differences in drug metabolic pathways, and pharmacogenomics, the role of acquired and inherited genetic differences, allows us to better predict how a patient will respond to a particular drug treatment so is at the heart of precision or stratified medicine. Pharmacogenetics / pharmacogenomics also play an important role in prediction and prevention of ADRs.

Pharmacogenetics is widely used in oncology to improve patient treatments and supports a precision medicine approach for many other conditions including cardio-vascular, inflammatory and infectious diseases. 

UK Pharmacogenetics & Stratified Medicine Network, Wolfson Centre for Personalised Medicine, Block A: Waterhouse Buildings, 1-5 Brownlow Street, Liverpool L69 3GL