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13 March 2015

Biomarkers for Heart + Lung Disease: Can they tailor care for clinical medicine?

lowres proofBiomarker discovery is a key component of the personalized medicine puzzle. A Friday morning session at the Heart + Lung Health FEST Scientific Symposium will focus on some of the latest biomarker research in our community and the potential clinical implications.
Dr. Keith Walley, Director of the Centre for Heart Lung Innovation, will share his work on the use of biomarker assessment in the ICU as a way to predict the outcome of patients. Physiologic biomarkers such as respiratory rate, heart rate, and oxygen saturation are best predictors of a rapid physiologic event (crash) in the ICU. Predicting a patient’s response to treatment using molecular biomarkers is best accomplished using information relevant to the molecular pathway(s) that the treatment impacts. Dr. Walley will share more insights on different examples, including how PCSK9 inhibition may be a useful strategy to help clear pathogen lipid molecules and thereby improve outcomes in sepsis patients (read a recent publication on his work with PCSK9 here).
Dr. Don Sin, Head of Respiratory Medicine at Providence Health Care, will discuss the importance of biomarker discovery in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). He will touch on such issues as barriers to improving COPD care and outcomes, the role that biomarker discovery can play, and the potential of “omics” in bringing biomarker solutions to COPD. Dr. Sin’s research includes identifying biomarkers to help predict which patients are at high risk for COPD “lung attacks” and also to differentiate these attacks from other conditions. Read more about his work here.
Dr. Scott Tebbutt of the PROOF Centre of Excellence, will shed some light on new advances in technology platforms for biomarker translation and identify key assay performance characteristics that are essential for this process. With technology ever advancing, Dr. Tebbutt will discuss the strengths and challenges in new, high-performance molecular platform technologies.
The session takes place in the morning of Friday, March 27 and is part of the Heart + Lung Health FEST Scientific Symposium (March 26-27). For the full symposium agenda click here.

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