Personalized treatments for thyroid disorders to be presented at ATA meeting

Internationally recognized thyroid disease experts will meet to discuss "Thyroid Disorders in the Era of Personalized Medicine" May 13 - 16 in Minneapolis, Minnesota at the American Thyroid Association's (ATA) ( Spring Meeting to be held at the Minneapolis Hyatt Regency Hotel.

The ATA, founded in 1923 as a nonprofit medical society, is the lead organization in promoting thyroid health and understanding thyroid biology. ATA members are physicians and scientists who work to enhance the understanding of thyroid physiology and pathophysiology and to improve the diagnosis and treatment of thyroid diseases. The ATA also promotes the education of physicians, patients, and the public about thyroid disorders, among the most common disorders of the endocrine system, affecting almost 13 million Americans.

New approaches to thyroid diseases are necessary to confront the rise in thyroid diseases. The incidence of thyroid cancer has been rising for a decade; hypothyroidism, increasingly recognized as being associated with co-morbidities, such as such those diseases affecting the heart, is rising among the elderly. New approaches, new treatments and more preventive measures are needed. Personalized medicine may hold many of the necessary keys.

"Personalized medicine is a concept that recognizes that a 'one-size-fits-all' medicine is no longer how medicine should be practiced in the twenty-first century," says ATA president Terry F. Davies, MD. "Personalized medicine focuses on individualizing therapy based on a person's genetic makeup as well as other, non-genetic factors."

Since the human genome was sequenced in 2000 and subsequent advances have been made in discovering the genetic basis for many diseases and disorders, medicine has been in the midst of the "personalized medicine" revolution. The variety of thyroid diseases - from hypothyroidism to thyroid cancer - may be more treatable and preventable when the advancements making personalized medicine possible are applied.

The ATA's 2010 Spring Meeting brings together those experts in thyroid diseases who are working at the frontier intersections of the genetic and molecular bases thyroid diseases as well as the genetic and molecular-based potentials for treatment.

"Traditionally, medicine has tried to group diseases and their treatments into unified categories. However, the same disease will have different manifestations, complications, and response to therapy in different individuals and, therefore, there is a need to individualize therapy for patients," says Yaron Tomer, M.D., F.A.C.P, meeting co-chair and director of autoimmune genetics at Mount Sinai Institute for Personalized Medicine.

The ATA Symposium will introduce personalized medicine to practicing thyroidologists.

"The meeting will emphasize both general concepts in personalized medicine as well as specific issues relating to thyroid diseases," says meeting co-chair Virginia Sarapura, M.D.

According to Dr. Davies, genetic and biomarker testing will offer information critical for patient care decisions, disease susceptibility, disease progression and potentially predict positive or adverse responses to drug therapy.

Researchers attending the ATA 2010 Spring Meeting will present current research on the potential for employing personalized medicine in treating thyroid cancer; hypothyroidism; hyperthyrdoidism; Graves' disease; thyroid issues in pregnancy; pediatric thyroid disease; and implementing pharmacogenomic screening to prevent drug reactions.

Presentations will include:
* Personalized Thyroid Cancer Treatment
* Personalized Surgical Therapy for Thyroid Cancer
* Pediatric Thyroid Disease
* Environmental Triggers of Autoimmune Thyroid Diseases
* Genetic Markers and Personalized Diagnoses
* Graves' Opthalmopathy

Attendees will include endocrinologists, surgeons, family and internal medicine physicians and other health care professionals.


 American Thyroid Association


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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