Leadership & Faculty

Administration

  • Gianrico Farrugia, M.D.

    Gianrico Farrugia, M.D.

    Director

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "We now can quickly decode every letter in a patient's genes and their whole genome. This information opens remarkable opportunities in our ability to individualize the way we prevent, predict, diagnose and treat diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, heart disease, cancer and diabetes."

  • Scott A. Beck

    Scott A. Beck

    Administrator

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "The excitement that I get is to go home at the end of the day and know I helped connect something we're doing in individualized medicine with improving patient care."

  • Konstantinos N. Lazaridis, M.D.

    Konstantinos N. Lazaridis, M.D.

    Associate Director in Minnesota
    Co-Director, Clinomics Program

    What will medicine look like in the future? "In the next five to 10 years, the use of next-generation sequencing for diagnosis, prognosis and therapy will be as common as ordering a complete blood count, a chest X-ray or a urinalysis."

  • Richard J. Caselli, M.D.

    Richard J. Caselli, M.D.

    Associate Director in Arizona

    What does the future hold? "We're looking forward to the day when Alzheimer's disease is a thing of the past. Someday soon, we believe that clinicians will be able to identify and prevent dementia, rather than simply slow its progression."

  • Yonas E. Geda, M.D.

    Yonas E. Geda, M.D.

    Assistant Director in Arizona

    How do you perceive individualized medicine? "Genomics is an important component of individualized medicine, but the story doesn’t end there. Health behaviors do not occur in a vacuum. Now science shows that lifestyle choices lead to measurable physical changes to the DNA and related structures. Therefore, the ultimate goal is to study and modify the bidirectional interaction between the genome and lifestyle choices."

  • Alexander S. Parker, Ph.D.

    Alexander S. Parker, Ph.D.

    Cecilia and Dan Carmichael Family Associate Director in Florida

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "This is a very exciting time. We have reached a point where technology allows us to explore the causes of and treatments for human disease like never before. We are applying these new technologies to ensure that Mayo Clinic continues its long tradition of providing the best care for each and every patient."

  • Asher Alban A. Chanan Khan, M.D.

    Asher Alban A. Chanan Khan, M.D.

    Assistant Director in Florida

    What does the future hold? "Hematological malignancies have proven to be some of the most difficult cancers, with tragically low survival rates for many. Our hope is that knowing the genomic components of these cancers and tailoring treatments to the molecular changes will not only help our patients live longer but also allow us to prevent them before they become a problem."

Translational programs

  • John C. Cheville, M.D.

    John C. Cheville, M.D.

    Co-Director, Biomarker Discovery Program

    What does the future hold? "In the case of prostate cancer, understanding the individual genetic changes in each prostate cancer in the context of the pathologic features, and planning treatment around these findings, is a new paradigm in caring for men with prostate cancer."

  • George Vasmatzis, Ph.D.

    George Vasmatzis, Ph.D.

    Co-Director, Biomarker Discovery Program

    What will be the impact of individualized medicine? "Genome sequencing is the single most important invention of our lifetime. It will eventually turn out to be more important than the microprocessor and personal computer — and that's coming from an electrical engineer."

  • Matthew J. Ferber, Ph.D.

    Matthew J. Ferber, Ph.D.

    Co-Director, Clinomics Program

    What will medicine look like in the coming years? "Medicine in the future will look totally different. Patients will come with their genome on a thumb drive, and it will be up to their doctors to tell them what it means for their particular conditions and potential treatments."

  • Eric D. Wieben, Ph.D.

    Eric D. Wieben, Ph.D.

    Director, Medical Genome Facility
    Co-Director, Clinomics Program

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "The idea that a single change in the 6 billion letters of a person's DNA could cause a disease or make someone sick fascinated me when I started graduate school. What we're able to do now with next-generation sequencing makes it all the more interesting because we can look at all 6 billion letters in a single assay. Now, we can begin to unravel the complexities of the most frustrating diseases and have a real impact on the health and well-being of our patients."

  • Tamas Ordog, M.D.

    Tamas Ordog, M.D.

    Director, Epigenomics Program

    What does the future hold? "Genomics tells us what is hard-wired in our bodies. Epigenomics allows us to manipulate the control systems. We're working toward a time when genes can simply be turned on or off, like a light switch, to restore health in an individual patient."

  • Heidi Nelson, M.D.

    Heidi Nelson, M.D.

    Director, Microbiome Program

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "The connections between our health and the trillions of bacteria inside us are staggering. They start forming before we're born and continue to influence our wellness throughout our lives. They've coevolved with us, and yet we still know so little about them. What's most exciting to me is that we are starting to probe this new frontier in a meaningful way, and by doing so, we will solve many of the mysteries of medicine."

  • Richard Weinshilboum, M.D.

    Richard Weinshilboum, M.D.

    Director, Pharmacogenomics Program

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "This is an amazing time that I wasn't sure I would see during my career. We're making the transition from knowing one 'sketch' of the human genome — that's the Human Genome Project — to being able to know the individual genome for each of our patients and their tumors."

Infrastructure programs

  • Richard Sharp, Ph.D.

    Richard R. Sharp, Ph.D.

    Director, Bioethics Program

    Mary Lou and John H. Dasburg Professor of Cancer Genomics

    Why is Mayo Clinic able to excel in individualized medicine? "Mayo is uniquely positioned to shape the future of individualized medicine in large part because of our traditional focus on meeting the needs of each individual patient. Our new programs in individualized medicine and biomedical ethics are natural extensions of that guiding philosophy. We see each patient’s medical needs within the larger context of their personal life circumstances, goals, and values."

  • Jean-Pierre A. Kocher, Ph.D.

    Jean-Pierre A. Kocher, Ph.D.

    Director, Bioinformatics Program

    What excites you about individualized medicine? "All of us in bioinformatics at Mayo Clinic are excited about looking at genome data and discovering new variants and thinking about all the ways this new information is going to help create a new test or improve the way a patient is cared for."

  • Stephen N. Thibodeau, Ph.D.

    Stephen N. Thibodeau, Ph.D.

    Co-Director, Biorepositories Program

    Why is Mayo Clinic able to excel in individualized medicine? "Access to high-quality, clinically annotated biospecimens is an essential ingredient for individualized medicine. The availability of biospecimens and clinical information from large numbers of healthy individuals and from patients with a variety of diseases dramatically accelerates our ability to translate genomic research into clinical practice. With these resources, the range of diseases we are able to study and the pace of discovery is staggering."

  • James D. Buntrock

    James D. Buntrock

    Director, Information Technology Program

    Why did you choose genomics? "Technology is so engrained in our daily lives that we rarely stop to think how it can be used. Genomics will eventually become as much a part of us as computers and smartphones."

  • Jeremy L. Friese, M.D.

    Jeremy L. Friese, M.D.

    Director, Business Development

    What are some of the opportunities in individualized medicine? "This emerging field opens wonderful new opportunities for partnerships with leading innovators and companies. Together, we are moving genomic medicine from science into clinical practice."