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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 53  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 19-24

Students' knowledge and views on pharmacogenomic education in the medical curriculum

1 Department of Pharmacology, Pt. J N M Medical College, Raipur, Chhattisgarh, India
2 Demonstrator, Department of Pharmacology, Maharaja Jitendra Narayan Medical College & Hospital, Coochbehar, West Bengal, India
3 Department of Pharmacology, Sri Aurobindo Institute of Medical Sciences Indore, Mathya Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Manju Agrawal
Department of Pharmacology, Pt. J N M Medical College, Raipur, Chhattisgarh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijp.IJP_495_19

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INTRODUCTION: Pharmacogenomics is a growing field of science that explores the genetic contributions in an individual's response to the drug, so as to choose the right drug in the right doses tailored to a patient's genetic makeup. Although pharmacogenomics information is incorporated in chapters discussing relevant drugs, it has not been materialized into clinical practice yet and still, it remains a challenge due to limited knowledge and accessibility of the pharmacogenomic tests to diagnose these polymorphisms. With this background, the objective of the study was to assess the knowledge and perception of pharmacogenomics among second-year MBBS students and to sensitize them regarding pharmacogenomics. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A cross-sectional study was done in which 138 medical students responded to a preformed semi-structured assessment tool. It comprised two main components (1) knowledge and (2) relevance of pharmacogenomics in medical education and clinical practice. RESULTS: Ninety-five percent students defined pharmacogenomics correctly, but only 54% were aware of genetic variations in drug targets, metabolizing enzymes, and transporters affecting drug therapy. Only 15% knew about the availability of pharmacogenomics tests in India. Eighty-four percent of students felt that incorporating pharmacogenomics education in the MBBS curriculum is a must for precision medicine. CONCLUSION: Second-year MBBS students had good knowledge of pharmacogenomics, but knowledge about the application in clinical practice and interpretation of pharmacogenomics was limited. Therefore, we recommend (1) basic pharmacogenomic education at all levels of medical curricula, (2) development of case-based knowledge application modules, (3) regular continuing medical education to update about available screening tools/biomarkers, and (4) patient and public awareness programs so that they receive personalized/precision medicine with optimum efficacy and reduced side effects and health-care costs.


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