What is Systems Medicine?
Systems Medicine is a modern offshoot of biological sciences that combines systems biology, computational biology, high throughput data analysis, metabolomics, transcriptomics, regulomics, phenomics, pharmacogenomics, integrated with biobanking, data analytics and animal studies to provide a highly sophisticated delivery of diagnostic and prognostic technologies towards improved health care.
Systems medicine is an approach to understand the complexity and dimensionality of the interactions and granularity of all the molecular and cellular determinants involved in the pathophysiology of a disease.
(Fig 1: Connecting molecules with medicine)
At SCSM, the focus will be to deliver in following areas:
1.To establish joint PhD programs with institutions within India and abroad.
2.To start Postgraduate Diploma, short-term Certificate and Master’s programs in the area of Systems Medicine.
3.To roll out systems medicine research, products and services relevant for the academia and industry.
4.To organize events including training, workshops, conferences and symposia for wider knowledge dissemination.
Research: At the SCSM, based on multidimensional molecular network presentations, novel and practical solutions will be generated towards improved patient care, for many diseases including cancer. Figure 2 summarizes the overall approach of SCSM. The key unmet need is to connect molecular descriptors with their multidimensional correlates using large patient datasets for better understanding, diagnosis and treatment outcomes.
Teaching: In view of the Systems Medicine emerging as a frontline area, there is a timely need to keep pace with the development towards customized and effective therapeutic solutions for complex diseases. At SCSM, the training program will comprise of the following components :
advances in systems biology and bioinformatics, molecular basis of human diseases, advances in genomics and transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics, immunomics, pathomics, ethics in research, regulatory compliances, IPR and entrepreneurship, research methodology, lab techniques, manuscript writing and editing, critical analysis and presentation of research articles, writing and defense of research proposal.
It is planned that over time, Special Center for Systems Medicine (SCSM) will become a vehicle and a national hub for the development of India specific clinical, molecular data and its integration and applications.
Fig 2: Components of the Systems Medicine
One of the key features of SCSM will be integration of the data from the ancient Indian holistic view of a disease as described in Ayurveda. This will provide an additional layer of information superimposed on the existing multi-omics data sets. At SCSM, data would be collected and studied in emerging and reemerging respiratory viral diseases, rare genetic diseases, solid and hematological malignancies etc.
SCSM will work in a very close relationship with the medical institutions offering Adjunct Faculty positions. A special program will be launched in collaboration with premier medical institutions. Other than Ph.D. program, a two-year postdoc program will be initiated for Ayurveda and modern medicine post graduates. In addition, the medical Post Graduate candidates will be trained in Systems Medicine towards their Thesis/Dissertation.
Further, the aim of the SCSM is also to develop comprehensive outreach programs and foster close ties with Start-ups and established pharma companies for rapid delivery of solutions from the bench to the bedside. This will help in spinning off translational innovations from the Special Centre towards improved public health.
Last updated on 14/06/20121