Boston Children's Hospital

What Does 'Pharmacogenomics' Mean?

Dr. Ingrid Holm, a researcher at Boston Children's Hospital, explains that pharmacogenomics uses information about genetics to tailor drugs to different individuals. Some people may metabolize certain drugs particularly quickly, while others may be slow metabolizers. Genetic testing may help us predict drug response and therefore improve treatment.

Misconceptions and Genetic Testing - Risk and Discrimination

Dr. Ingrid Holm discusses certain misconceptions that people may have in regard to genetic testing. For example, people may wrongly think that health insurance companies can discriminate against them based on their results (this is illegal). Similarly, people may think that because they may not have a genetic risk for developing a disease, they will definitely not develop that disease.

What is a Genetic Counselor?

Dr. Ingrid Holm explains that a genetic counselor is someone who has a Masters Degree in genetic counseling, who is trained in the fundamentals of genetic science, and also how to discuss genetic diseases with individuals and families. Genetic test results are often returned by genetic counselors.