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Genetics Journal Club: 2017-18

A journal club for GWUMC faculty, fellows, residents and students interested in genetics.

December 2017


This virtual journal club is intended to provide a way for health care practitioners to see new literature in genetics and to learn about developments in the field.

Articles on topics in medical genetics will be posted monthly, or more often if a particularly timely article is published.  To participate, read the article and then add your comments to participate in the online discussion. 

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

Is a cure for hemophilia within reach?

That is the question now being considered in light of a new research article in the New England Journal of Medicine in which a new gene therapy drug was given to men with hemophilia B.  After receiving the new drug, the patients were able to stop using clotting factors to treat their hemophilia.  Patients rates of bleeding also fell - from about 11 bleeding events per year to less than one bleeding event per year.  Read about the research here:

Explore more of Himmelfarb Library's genetics collection by checking out:


Genetics News - December 2017

  • Is this drug more effective for individuals with a specific genetic profile?  
  • Are some people at increased risk of a serious drug reaction from a specific drug?  
  • How is pharmacogenomic information being used clinically right now?

Pharmacogenomics: Precision Medicine and Drug Response, a new CME review article from the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, explores these issues.  This article provides a brief history of pharmacogenomics, information on current clinical applications, and conceptualizes the future of pharmaceogenomics.

To explore more genetics topics, check out Dr. Charles Macri's online Genetics Journal Club!

Genetics News- November 2017

Is obesity caused by more factors than eating too much and exercising too little?

A new article in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences describes a genetic variation called ankyrin-B which may cause people to gain weight.   This article by Damaris N. Lorezo and Vann Bennett demonstrates that ankyrin-B deficiency makes mice more likely to become obese with age or when fed a high-fat diet.  

Genetics News - October 2017

Genetic link between asthma, hay fever, and eczema?

Clinicians have long know that patients who have asthma are also likely to have hay fever or eczema.  Researchers have now identified the gene variants which are responsible for this association and published their results in Nature Genetics.  To find these variants, the genomes of more than 360,000 people were analyzed and 136 positions in the genome were identified.  If an individual has inherited these genetic risk factors, that person is a higher risk of developing asthma, hay fever, and/or eczema - or all three!

Genetics News - September 2017

Is there a genetic cause for preterm births? 

While evidence has suggested that this is true, the first study identifying specific genetic factors that exist in women with preterm deliveries was just published in the New England Journal of Medicine.  This study used data from nearly 50,000 women and identified specific genetic variations which can predict length of gestation and risk of preterm birth:


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