Genelex-sponsored research awarded at managed care pharmacy conference

researchRecent research sponsored by Genelex and undertaken by University of Utah researchers has been recognized at the national Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy (AMCP) conference.

The research shows that as many as 50 percent of patients 65 and older are taking at least one medication metabolized by a genetically variable drug metabolizing enzyme.

The poster for this work, co-presented by Genelex Director of Pharmacy Tyler Mamiya, PharmD, won a bronze medal at the April 9 AMCP conference. The research was titled “Characterization of an Elderly Population with Potential for Drug-Gene Interactions to Determine the Value of Pharmacogenetic Risk Screening.”

The principal investigator for this research is Dr. Diana Brixner, PhD, RPh. Dr. Brixner is Professor and Chair of the Department of Pharmacotherapy at the University of Utah College of Pharmacy.

The goal of this research was to describe baseline demographics, clinical characteristics, and data on healthcare resource utilization of a cohort of elderly patients that may benefit from genetic testing for variations in specific drug-metabolizing enzymes (CYP2C9, CYP2C19, CYP2D6, CYP3A4 and CYP3A5). The researchers ultimately crunched data from 252,184 individuals 65 and older over a period from July 1, 2012, to March 31, 2013.

Preliminary data found that as many as 50 percent of patients included in the study were taking at least one medication metabolized by a genetically variable drug metabolizing enzyme. Of these patients, 20 percent required a clinic visit, ER visit or hospitalization over a nine-month period.

The patients identified in this work will serve as the control group for an ongoing prospective, non-interventional, multisite observational study Genelex is undertaking that seeks to assess benefits of pharmacogenetic testing among elderly polypharmacy patients who are the greatest at risk of adverse drug events. This study will also assess the impact of recommendations for medication changes on clinical decision making, patient outcomes, and health care resource utilization to determine which medications, specialties, or patient segments derive the greatest benefit from this intervention.

Research has shown that patients taking multiple medications at the same time are often most at risk from adverse drug events, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate cost $3.5 billion annually in extra health care costs. Pharmacogenetic testing has the potential to reduce these side effects by allowing medication regimens to be tailored to a specific patient’s DNA.