Personalized Medicine in Sleep Health
Personalized sleep medicine is an emerging area of research and practice. Sleep disorders are common with appreciable morbidity and economic impact. Recent studies have identified clear inter-individual differences in performance vulnerability to sleep loss. Although clear biomarkers for this vulnerability are not known, new research indicates that genetic influences on sleep and circadian systems may be important. As well, recent work has shown a wide variation in clinical phenotypes and conventional disease severity metrics in sleep apnea. Similar phenotypic variation in insomnia exists. Currently, treatments in sleep disorders are not well individualized with typical “silo” approaches that do not reflect the value of targeting treatment to the individual patient. Development of a personalized medicine agenda in sleep health will depend on better research standardization and international collaboration to better understand phenotype-genotype influences on sleep disorders and their individualized treatments.
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