Flagship service kicks off with genetic health showcase and demonstration
in New York City
REDWOOD SHORES, Calif., April 8, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Navigenics, a privately held personalized health services company, today launched Navigenics(TM) Health Compass, a new service that combines a genetic health assessment with the latest discoveries in science and medicine as well as genetic counseling. The service gives individuals information on their chances of developing up to 18 common conditions, so that with their physicians, they can obtain earlier diagnosis, delay onset or prevent the conditions altogether.
Preventable illnesses account for a significant fraction of the health- care costs in the United States today and these diseases are some of the leading causes of death. Yet, many people are not aware of their risk early enough to take preventive action. Analyzing a person's genetic predisposition for developing common health conditions, Navigenics Health Compass provides information grounded in scientific research so that members and their physicians can develop a personal wellness plan to improve health and quality of life. Navigenics offers the only service providing on-staff Certified Genetic Counselors to help people understand how their individual results can translate into a personalized plan for a healthier life.
"Navigenics' mission is to improve health outcomes by informing people of their genetic risks and motivating them to take action," said Mari Baker, president and CEO of Navigenics. "The Navigenics Health Compass is a tool that individuals and their physicians can use to develop a more focused, personalized health plan and manage disease pre-symptomatically to delay or prevent onset or complications."
The Navigenics Health Compass was born out of scientific discoveries initially made possible by the Human Genome Project, completed in 2003. Since that time, there have been more than 4,000 published studies correlating genes to diseases and other common human traits. Navigenics' science team scours those publications - including scientific journals such as Science, Nature, and the New England Journal of Medicine - to include in each analysis only studies of the highest quality. Navigenics' team, including medical writers, genetic counselors and clinicians, then assures that each condition is either preventable or can significantly benefit from early detection and treatment. The company provides that information for its members so they have a clear focus on what matters most for their health.
Genetic Health Showcase
Navigenics is launching the Navigenics Health Compass service with a health and wellness showcase from April 8-17 at 76 Greene St. in Manhattan's SoHo district. Members of the public are invited to learn about the new era of personalized medicine, genetics and prevention through seminars, panel discussions and other events designed to bring the power of genetics from the laboratory into real life. Visitors to the showcase will have the opportunity to speak with genetic counselors, physicians and company representatives to learn more about the service.
"Navigenics Health Compass brings genetics to mainstream health care by giving individuals the information in their DNA to actively maintain and improve their health," said Navigenics board member John Doerr. "Tomorrow is too late to start thinking about prevention. Navigenics gives you the personal genetic information to truly know thyself."
How the Navigenics Health Compass Works
The Navigenics Health Compass starts with a whole-genome scan derived from a simple saliva sample. At a specialized lab, an individual's genetic material is scanned for markers associated with risk for developing conditions such as colon cancer, heart attack, obesity and glaucoma. The Navigenics Health Compass guarantees results for 100 percent of the genetic markers analyzed. Once 100 percent of the genetic markers are successfully scanned, the results are analyzed and encrypted before being made available online. Through a password-protected Web site, a summary of an individual's prioritized risk scores is presented along with suggestions on strategies to prevent or delay illness. Navigenics also provides access to a personal Certified Genetic Counselor and online consumer-friendly, physician-ready medical information to help users understand their individual results and create a plan with their physician to help minimize risk, focus on prevention and strive for optimal health.
The Navigenics Health Compass provides ongoing, secure, personalized updates for an entire year on new genetic correlations, new clinical therapies and other wellness strategies. While the Navigenics Health Compass today reports on 18 conditions (17 each for men and women), over time, this number will include dozens and perhaps hundreds of conditions as scientific and medical research continues to identify the genetic basis for a wide variety of health conditions.
Navigenics is committed to working within and improving current medical practice. As part of that commitment, Navigenics has collaborated with physicians, bioethicists and genetic counselors to create a service that is clinically relevant and can be integrated into medical practice. The Navigenics Health Compass provides a specifically tailored physician-ready medical report on a member's DNA results so that members may work with their physician on a personal health plan. Navigenics also has sponsored an unbiased, independently authored continuing medical education (CME) program through Medscape that doctors can access on http://www.medscape.com. Physicians can earn CME credits for completing the course, which is designed to educate them about genomics and how to use the latest scientific discoveries in their practice.
Navigenics offers its members the benefits of key alliances with leading medical institutions, such as Partners Healthcare, Johns Hopkins Medicine and Scripps Genomic Medicine, who make their cutting-edge medical expertise available to Navigenics members who seek follow-up care.
"Many people, after receiving their Navigenics Health Compass results, will be able to approach their risks by working with their physician and making modifications to their diet and exercise," said George Sack, medical director of Johns Hopkins USA referral and consultation center. "Others may wish to pursue more active prevention, detection or treatment strategies, and Johns Hopkins is excited to help fill that need."
Navigenics is also committed to moving the field forward through research collaborations with many of the world's leading research and medical institutions.
Navigenics' lab services are provided by Affymetrix, Inc. via its CLIA-certified laboratory near Sacramento, Calif. In addition, Navigenics has established a group of clinical, scientific, policy and ethics advisors, bringing together many of the industry's leading experts to address the issue of consumer-empowered genetic health information.
Navigenics, Inc. is a privately held company based in Redwood Shores,
Calif. The company was founded by David Agus, M.D. and Dietrich Stephan,
Ph.D., with the goal of improving health outcomes in individuals across the
population. Navigenics educates and empowers customers with knowledge of
their genetic predispositions, and then motivates them to act on the
information to prevent the onset of disease, achieve earlier diagnosis,
appropriately manage disease, or otherwise lessen its impact. Navigenics'
lead investors are Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, Sequoia Capital and
MDV-Mohr Davidow Ventures. More information is at http://www.navigenics.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Feinstein Kean Healthcare
(415) 994-0040 - mobile
|SOURCE Navigenics, Inc.|
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