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Medical News & Perspectives
April 3, 2002

Scientists Find Some Genes a Bad Omen for Anti-HIV Drug

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JAMA. 2002;287(13):1637. doi:10.1001/jama.287.13.1637-JMN0403-2-1

Seattle—With the human genome sequence largely in hand, researchers have predicted that pharmacogenetics—the study of the genetic causes of individual variations in the body's response to drugs—will help physicians tailor treatment to patients' genetic makeup, allowing them to prescribe medications most likely to help and least likely to cause harm. Now, researchers have reported here at the Ninth Annual Retrovirus Conference that they can identify HIV-infected individuals with a particular gene variant that indicates they are at risk of experiencing a severe, potentially fatal reaction to the widely used antiretroviral drug abacavir.

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