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Personalized medicine from ancient times to the present

Zhaklin Stoykova, Lyubomira Koeva-Dimitrova


Introduction: The history of personalized medicine could be traced back to ancient times. The term personalized medicine is defined by The Food and Drug Administration (DFA) as `providing the right patient with the right drug at the right dose at the right time`. The aim of study is to identify different stages of the personalized medicine development.

Materials and Methods: The research is based on a literature review. Scientific printed and electronic sources have been used. Systematisation and classification as basic scientific methods have been applied.

Results: Four stages of personalized medicine development have been identified. The personalized methods of healing have been discussed by Hippocrates. Thus, the first stage could be attributed with the emerging of the early concept. The Human Genome Project (1984-2002), which was closely related with the personalized medicine development, was identified as the second stage and its presentation in 2003 marked the begging of the third stage. As a result of the project, in present, the personalized medicine combines pharmacogenomics or pharmacokinetics information with the traditional methods in order to identify patient`s individual characteristics. Companion diagnostics help medical specialist to decide which target therapy and in what dosage to use in a patient treatment. The fourth stage of the personalized medicine development embraces the period after 2012. The first target therapy, called Kalydeco, was approved by the FDA in 2012. The FDA have approved more than 90 target therapies until 2017. Thirty-five of them are available in Bulgaria. The European Alliance for Personalized Medicine was launched in 2012. Two associations for personalized medicine were introduced in Bulgaria in 2014.

Conclusion: Personalized healing can be traced back to ancient times. Today personalized medicine is changing the medical world and patient care, providing opportunity for personalized treatment. The personalized medicine development in the recent years is strongly related with advances in pharmacogenetics and pharmacokinetics.


personalized medicine



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