Obama Pushes ‘Precision Medicine Initiative’

David Jackson, USA Today, January 30, 2015

President Obama asked Congress on Friday to approve $215 million for a “Precision Medicine Initiative” designed to help doctors tailor treatments to the individual characteristics of their patients, officials said.

New tools can help doctors assess a patient’s genes, environment, and lifestyle, improving the chances for better treatment and also helping the overall fight against diseases like cancer and diabetes, said Obama and aides.

At a White House event featuring doctors and researchers, Obama defined the promise precision medicine as “delivering the right treatments at the right time–every time–to the right person.”

As part of the project, researchers will look for a million volunteers to contribute to a database of genetic information. This and other tools can help doctors assess how lifestyle choices–including diet, exercise, smoking, and alcohol–affect a person’s genetic makeup, and which kinds of treatments can affect which patients.

“Just like analyzing our DNA teaches us more about who we are than ever before, analyzing data from one of the largest research populations ever assembled will teach us more about the connections between us than ever before,” Obama said.


The $215 million budget request is a down payment on a years-long project, officials said.

Of the budget request, $130 million would be used to seek volunteers and start the database; $70 million would be tagged to the National Cancer Institute for research to fight against that disease.

Another $10 million would go to the Food and Drug Administration, which regulates the technology used to analyze DNA, and $5 million would be used to develop health information technology with privacy protections.


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  • Luca

    Maybe he is looking for a ‘cure’ for low IQ and impulse control for his people. The only cure I can think of incarceration or deportation.

    • LexiconD1


    • Sid Ishus

      Incentivized birth control.

  • Fine, but this kind of real science has a way of being quickly stuffed down a rabbit hole and never talked about again when the implications are too much to handle.

    • John Smith

      Or misused.

  • haroldcrews

    He may not like where the data, evidence, and necessary inferences lead him.

  • TomIron361

    For the most part, people are sickly because of the way they live. Seldom venturing out of doors and even leaving areas so they don’t have to endure weather conditions such as winter conditions as they do here in N.J. So, obviously, living this way, their immune systems are not up to par. So when certain viruses come along, they’re much more susceptible to them than if they lived properly.

    • toldev

      That is so true. There are other aspects of that as well. The left blames the poor health of minorities on poverty and institutional racism. But I think the average ghetto dweller, thanks to programs like Medicaid, probably spends more on health care annually than what the average working class white does. Some of the difference in health outcomes is probably is due to genetics. Blacks mature earlier and breed earlier than whites. It would seem to follow that they would die earlier too. But the overwhelming difference in heath outcomes is probably due to lifestyle choices. Is it really any surprise when a 400 pound black woman, who has to use a scooter to even shop for groceries, ends up with type 2 diabetes? Or when a black male who has been using cocaine heavily for 20 years ends up dying of a heart attack in his late 30’s?

      • SentryattheGate

        A nurse who worked many years in the county health department, with mostly black patients, told me that those patients w/their free health care (Medicaid) often go to many doctors. They are looking for the doctor who will write them up as disabled, so they can get the checks!

        • IBWHITE

          Absolutely true. They also doctor shop for “dey babies.” If they can get them declared ADHD then they’re entitled to an extra monthly check and special schooling. It’s all about milking the White man.

          • SentryattheGate

            Parasites feeding on the host (until the host dies)!

  • dd121

    They’re getting very close to admitting that genes are real and mean something. Whoops.

  • E_Pluribus_Pluribus

    Genetics is where computer science was 40 years ago. Basic knowledge and applications are beginning to explode. Thoughts:

    1) Consider getting a good foundation in genetics— if for no other reason than to make Nicholas Wade’s A Troublesome Inheritance and Gregory Cochran and Henry Harpending’s The 10,000 Year Explosion more useful. I’ve had an excellent experience with one of the Great Courses (a commercial firm that contracts with professors with a reputation for outstanding teaching for a series of lectures on a wide range of subjects). I am 3/4’s of the way through Understanding Genetics: DNA, Genes, and Their Real-World Applications, which is 24 half-hour lectures by a genetics researcher David Sadava). Google the course and read reviews.

    2) If you have spare savings, consider investing in a biotech mutual fund after the next big market pull back.

    • Itooktheredpill

      Genetics is the future. During my first 2 years of college I went through a severe health crisis. One of the many things I had to learn and understand to get out of said health crisis were genetics and there profound effect on who we are and our daily life.

      It was eye opening to say the least.

  • Tim_in_Indiana

    As part of the project, researchers will look for a million volunteers to contribute to a database of genetic information

    What do you want to bet that they’ll get far more White volunteers than they need, while they’ll have to “compensate” (grease the palm of) Blacks and Hispanics in order to get them to step forward. This is because Whites have the IQ to appreciate the implications of health studies like this, while nonwhites are unable to see the point of anything that doesn’t benefit them personally.

    • Alexandra1973

      I have to ask what they intend to do with said genetic information. Big Brother anyone?

  • De Doc

    So what will they say when they do find profound differences, medical or not, in genetics between different ethnic and racial groups?

    • Anna Tree

      Medicine is getting more and more race-oriented. OOPS “genes”-oriented.
      www ncbi nlm nih gov/pmc/articles/PMC3328537/
      Racial difference in blood clotting. “We may need to consider our patient’s
      race when using certain heart disease therapies.”
      www medicalxpress com/news/2013-11-racial-difference-blood-clotting-warrants
      There are even some medicines directed to people of a particular race:
      www ncbi nlm nih gov/pubmed/15533851
      This drug has “let your doctor or pharmacist know if you’re of Asian origin”:
      www patient co uk/medicine/Rosuvastatin htm
      Racial and ethnic distribution of bloodtypes:
      www bloodbook com/world-abo html
      Drug resistance varies by race:
      www scientificamerican com/article cfm?id=study-shows-drug-resistan
      Mixed-race patients struggle to find marrow donors. Since a body rarely accepts organs, stem cells, or marrow from someone of another race, sometimes even from a different ethnicity:
      www phys org/news162659550 html
      Racial differences of muscoskeletal traits:
      www analyseeconomique files wordpress com/2011/09/brain-size-iq-and-racial-group-differences-evidence-from-musculoskeletal-traits pdf
      Germs in your gum can reveal your ethnicity:
      www dailymail co uk/sciencetech/article-2477436/Scientists-germs-GUMS-reveal-ethnicity-way-fingerprints-can html
      Four genetic variants associated with blood pressure discovered in blacks:
      www medicalxpress com/news/2013-09-african-american-genetic-variants-blood-pressure html
      Racial differences in survival of patients on dialysis:
      www nature com/ki/journal/v58/n3/full/4495489a html
      Race can be discovered only by cranial measurements. Ask any forensic, they
      learn that in the first year:
      www mvhigh net/jnevis/rap/lab_bone_determining_gender htm
      Forensics can even help solve crimes by identifying the race:
      www youtube com/watch?v=qVsV68-Ask0

    • Spikeygrrl

      They’ve already found a good many cases where different races respond to various drugs in very different ways. But you’ll never see that on the 11:00 news.

    • MBlanc46

      Impossible. It’s racist to even suggest it. Check your privilege!

  • John Smith

    Now they will know when to optimally send you before the death panels based on your genetic profile and the probability of a successful outcome for medical treatment and the future need for such treatments.

    • IstvanIN

      Like Edward G. Robinson in Soylent Green?

      • John Smith

        That’s next.

        • Spikeygrrl

          It’s been said before, and attributed to many: Feed the homeless to the hungry.

  • Albert

    Reminds me of an old saying: an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

  • Charles Martel

    Liberals will likely insist white genes be modified to “dumb down” the next generation. After all, that has been their approach to education and wealth distribution!

  • crockadoodle6

    Which government agency will be sued along with the Dr. and hospital when the patient claims an injury? Plaintiff’s lawyers must be licking their lips….really deep pockets to pick.

  • crockadoodle6

    Precision medicine. New phrase for ‘precision redistribution’?

    • Chasmania

      Only after they carpet bomb taxpayers and the rich with WMD tax rates !

  • jviscont1

    so when you get sick, depending on outside sources who have access to more than an aspirin is un-American?

  • MartelsGhost

    Preemptive death panels here we come.

    Those lefties and their eugenics. Can’t wait until they see which race is least cost effective…………………

  • Spikeygrrl

    This is scary stuff, meant not to assist doctors but to override them.

    LIKE HELL the feds are going to collect my medical data!

  • Itooktheredpill

    The average american is pretty clueless when it comes to proper nutrition and health. This is of course profoundly worse with minorities.

    Good luck trying to convince Demarcus and Shantazia to put down the grape soda and drink some water.

  • MBlanc46

    Maybe this a good idea, maybe not. But good or bad, it doesn’t really matter, because we don’t have the $215 million.

  • Alexandra1973

    Cancer and diabetes can be cured (yes, even cancer!) by herbal means…and dietary means.

    I know of someone who cured his own brain cancer using herbal remedies. Iodine is great against cancer, and so’s Vitamin K2.