Monday, January 22, 2018

Announcement: Precision Medicine and the Reinvention of Human Disease

In January, 2018, Academic Press is publishing my latest book, Precision Medicine and the Reinvention of Human Disease

Here is the book description, from the back cover:

Despite what you may have read in the popular press and in social media, Precision Medicine is not devoted to finding unique treatments for individuals, based on analyzing their DNA. To the contrary, the goal of Precision Medicine is to find general treatments that are highly effective for large numbers of individuals who fall into precisely diagnosed groups.

We now know that every disease develops over time, through a sequence of defined biological steps, and that these steps may differ among individuals, based on genetic and environmental conditions. We are currently developing rational therapies and preventive measures, based on our precise understanding of the steps leading to the clinical expression of diseases.

Precision Medicine and the Reinvention of Human Disease explains the scientific breakthroughs that have changed the way that we understand diseases, and reveals how medical scientists are using this new knowledge to launch a medical revolution.

Key Features
  • Clarifies the foundational concepts of Precision Medicine, distinguishing this field from its predecessors such as genomics, pharmacogenetics, and personalized medicine.
  • Gathers the chief conceptual advances in the fields of genetics, pathology, and bioinformatics, and synthesizes a coherent narrative for the field of Precision Medicine.
  • Delivers its message in plain language, and in a relaxed, conversational writing style, making it easy to understand the complex subject matter.
  • Guides the reader through a coherent and logical narrative, gradually providing expertise and skills along the way.
  • Covers the importance of data sharing in Precision Medicine, and the many data-related challenges that confront this fragile new field.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Introduction: Seriously, What is Precision Medicine?                     

Chapter 2. Redefining Disease Causality                                            
  Section 2.1 Causality and Its Paradoxes                              
  Section 2.2 Why We Are Confident that Diseases Develop in Steps                  
  Section 2.3 Cause of Death                                           
  Section 2.4 What Is a Disease Pathway?                                              
  Section 2.5 Does Single Event Pathogenesis Ever Happen?      

Chapter 3. Genetics: Clues, Not Answers, to the Mysteries of Precision Medicine         
  Section 3.1 Inscrutable Genes                                               
  Section 3.2 Inscrutable Diseases                                            
  Section 3.3 Recursive Epigenomic/Genomic Diseases                                              
  Section 3.4 Why a Gene-based Disease Classification Is a Bad Idea           

Chapter 4. Disease Convergence
  Section 4.1 Mechanisms of Convergence                                       
  Section 4.2 Phenocopy Diseases: Convergence Without Mutation        
  Section 4.3 The Autoantibody Phenocopies                                      
  Section 4.4 Pathway-Directed Treatments for Convergent Diseases             

Chapter 5. The Precision of the Rare Diseases                                          
  Section 5.1 The Biological Differences Between Rare Diseases and Common Diseases   
  Section 5.2 Precision Medicine's First Benefit: Cures for Rare Diseases            
  Section 5.3 What the Rare Diseases Tell Us About the Common Diseases               
  Section 5.4 Treatments for Rare Diseases are Effective Against the Common Diseases 

Chapter 6. Precision Organisms                                                        
  Section 6.1 Modern Taxonomy of Infectious Diseases                                    
  Section 6.2 Our Genome Is a Book Titled "The History of Human Infections"           
  Section 6.3 Inflammatory Diseases: Collateral Damage in the War on Human Infection    
  Section 6.4 Revising Koch's Postulates in the Era of Precision Diagnostics      
  Section 6.5 Diseases-in-waiting                                              
  Section 6.6 Precision Taxonomy                                               

Chapter 7. Reinventing Diagnosis                                                  
  Section 7.1 The Principles of Classification               
  Section 7.2 Superclasses                                                     
  Section 7.3 Classifications Cannot Be Based on Similarities                       
  Section 7.4 The Horrible Consequences of Class Blending                
  Section 7.5 What Is Precision Diagnosis?                                   

Chapter 8. Precision Data                                                              
  Section 8.1 What Are the Minimal Necessary Properties of Good Data?              
  Section 8.2 Data Identification and Data Deidentification                      
  Section 8.3 What Do We Do With Non-quantitative, Descriptive Data?    
  Section 8.4 Incredibly Simple Methods to Understand Precision Medicine Data         
  Section 8.5 Data Reanalysis: More important than the Original Data Analysis      
  Section 8.6 What Is Data Sharing, and Why Don't We Do More of It?              

Chapter 9. The Alternate Futures of Precision Medicine                               
  Section 9.1 Hypersurveillance                           
  Section 9.2 Do It Yourself Medicine                                   
  Section 9.3 Eugenics                                          
  Section 9.4 Public Health                                                
  Section 9.5 The Data Analyst of Tomorrow                           
  Section 9.6 Fast, Cheap, Precise Clinical Trials              
  Section 9.7 Animal Experimentation                 

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