Let’s Custom-Build Birth Control

Women across the globe weighing a host of options for birth control never get a straight answer to a basic question: How will it affect me, specifically? You don’t know until you try, women are told.  

For the 900 million women who use contraceptives worldwide, “unacceptable ambiguity about side effects is the standard,” writes Megan Christofield, a family planning technical adviser at Jhpiego. But precision medicine could be the answer, she writes.

The field of pharmacogenomic research is beginning to unveil how genetic variations influence responses to drugs. Applied to contraceptives, gene testing could predict efficacy and side effects on an individual basis.

STAT (Commentary)


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