It may sometimes be hard to imagine the costs of certain procedures or actions dropping to 0.01 percentage of costs over a period of ten years. In 2008, whole genome sequencing cost upwards of a staggering 10 million dollars; this has now dropped to around 1000 dollars in a span of ten years. This change is dramatic, and is largely the result of advances in technology that have made it possible. The single biggest benefit is the ability to conduct research more extensively and offer a cost effective method for diagnosing disease.
Sequencing technology has helped slash costs
The biggest contributor to this change is undeniably the sequencing technology that has enabled companies to offer reduced costs. The costs are expected to reduce further and bioinformatic analysis has greatly helped researches and the medical fraternity to work towards medical interventions that offer results with a high degree of precision. Whole genome sequencing helps public healthcare authorities to use health data with the genetic data to understand and predict health conditions in categories of individuals. This will help in working on preventive health care and precision health care which will deliver better outcomes.
A step towards targeted treatments/translational medicine with genetic analysis
Targeted treatments are expected to help change the outcomes of treatment. For instance, awareness of the genetic signature of tumors will help health care authorities to put together a targeted treatment that will offer better results than present day interventions. RNA Sequencing, which refers to transcriptome sequencing, offers valuable information on mutations and gene expressions. Bioinformatics analysis for transcriptome often called as RNA seq data analysis are a step in the right direction towards translational medicine.
The move from laboratories to clinics
Whole genome sequencing was initially regarded more as a laboratory related research, mainly due to the prohibitive costs. However, whole genome sequence data is now being increasingly used in clinics. This has become largely possible due to the availability of sequencing at lesser costs, and technology that helps clinics to easily interpret and understand the information from gene sequencing. This will help clinics to predict susceptibility to disease and the response of drugs, which will help improve outcomes.