Personalized and Precision Medicine

NSGC Online Course on Personalized and Precision Medicine

NSGC is pleased to announce the launch of the Personalized and Precision Medicine online course on June 15, 2015. 

Course Objectives

After participating in the “Personalized and Precision Medicine” online sessions, learners will be able to:

  • Summarize the historical perspective, current research and recent advancements in personalized and precision medicine.
  • Identify how the practice of genetic counseling is impacted by advances in personalized and precision medicine.
  • Describe recent developments in personalized and precision medicine as related to genetic counseling subspecialty areas.

Course Format

The course consists of 10 pre-recorded presentations by leaders in the personalized and precision medicine community. The presentations include the presenter's lecture, fully synchronized to the slide presentation. All presentations will be posted online via the NSGC website for access and review. Participants can listen to presentations on their own schedule by accessing the NSGC website. While the sessions may be viewed in any order, it may be most useful to complete them in the order listed.

Participants interested in earning CEUs for participation in the Personalized and Precision Medicine course will be required to complete and pass an online quiz for each presentation with a score of 80% or greater.


The National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) has approved this program for up to 1.03 CEUs (or 10.32 Category 1 Contact Hours) through 6/9/2019. CEUs earned through this program will be accepted by ABGC as Category 1 CEUs for purposes of certification and recertification.

Course Modules

MODULE 1: An Overview of the Historical Perspective and Current Status of Personalized/Precision Medicine

Presented by: Raju Kucherlapati, PhD, Harvard Medical School

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe how genetics plays a very important role in all aspects of human health and disease.
  • Describe The Human Genome Project and how the subsequent developments in genetics/genomics are playing a critical role in our understanding of the basis of human disease. 
  • Describe Personalized Medicine and how it is impacting how we care for patients.

MODULE 2: Current and Emerging Technologies for Precision Diagnostics

Presented by: Rebecca Nagy, MS, LGC, Guardant Health and Lindsay Fosler, MS, LCGC, Illumina

Learning Objectives:

  • Compare the current technologies used in precision diagnostics (i.e. NGS, qPCR, microarray, etc)
  • Contrast the differences in an LDT vs. IVD test (with respect to regulatory issues, reimbursement, etc)
  • Describe how cell-free DNA technologies can be used for precision medicine

MODULE 3: The Role of the Genetic Counselors in the Delivery of Precision Medicine

Presented by: Sara Riordan, MS, CGC, Thermo Fischer Scientific

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe current responsibilities with precision dx and what was needed to prepare for that role
  • Discuss strategies for GCs to integrate themselves into the precision medicine world
  • Examine areas where GCs may have to close knowledge gaps or skills (i.e. what training is needed?)

MODULE 4: Developing a Personalized Medicine Program in a Community Health System

Presented by: Lynn Gail Dressler, Dr.P.H., Mission Health

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the value proposition for developing a personalized medicine program to Senior Leadership.
  • Explain how to apply principles of health policy to develop the program, including assessment, planning, piloting, evaluation, expansion, implementation and sustainability.
  • Explain how to prepare for strategic planning and re-planning. Understand what makes your organization tick.
  • Discuss how genetic counselors can be involved with this initiative

MODULE 5: Educating Physicans/Clinicians about Personalized Medicine

Presented by: Paul Billings, MD, PhD, FACP, FACMG, Omicia Inc. and Thermo Fisher Scientific

Learning Objectives:

  • Discuss how genetic counselors can best work with physicians on genomic medicine educational initiatives
  • Describe how information needs to be reported in order for the physician to act on the information
  • Review the challenges faced in educating physicians on genomic medicine

MODULE 6: Translating Biomarkers into Clinical Practice

Presented by: Barbara A. Conley, MD, National Cancer Institute

Learning Objectives:

  • Review how biomarkers are discovered to become drug targets (i.e. how do you develop a gene/variant list of actionable drug targets).
  • Discuss how partnerships with pharma are established.
  • Describe clinical trial design.
  • Summarize the process assay development and validation.

MODULE 7: Direct-to-Consumer Genetic Testing: Ethics and Impact of Information

Presented by: Erynn Gordon, MS, CGC, 23andme

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe the current availability of direct-to-consumer testing (23andme, nutritional genomics, fitness testing, etc)
  • Explain the controversy surrounding the ELSI of these tests
  • Review current research performed on consumers in discussing the underlying ethical questions raised by DTC genomics and its implications for public understanding of personalized medicine

MODULE 8: The Use of Genomic Assays in Cancer Patient Management

Presented by: Mickey Williams, PhD, National Institutes of Health

Learning Objectives:

  • Provide broad overview of each of the major clinical trials in oncology (M-PACT, NCI-MATCH, ALCHEMIST, Lung-MAP and pharma partnerships) and how they may impact patient care
  • Discuss the current LDT and IVD market for tumor profiling (academic hospitals, reference labs, community hospital, etc)
  • Describe the major therapeutic targets in various cancer types and dx testing impacts patient outcome (what are commonly ordered by physicians and what should be but are not?) 
  • Discuss nucleosomes/histones and upcoming immunotherapies in cancer

MODULE 9: Precision Diagnostics in Cardiology and Neuromuscular Disease

Presented by: Lisa M. Dellefave-Castillo, MS, CGC, Northwestern University and Elizabeth McNally, MD, PhD, Northwestern University

Learning Objectives:

  • Describe how the genetic test results impact management and are used for diagnostic decision-making in cardiovascular and neuromuscular disease.
  • Provide an overview of any major clinical trials currently underway.

MODULE 10: Psychiatric Pharmacogenomics

Presented by: Kim Horn, MS, LCGC, Assurex Health

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify current challenges in treating mental illness and the utility of pharmacogenomic testing
  • Discuss examples of pharmacodynamic genes and appropriateness of testing, as supported by clinical studies
  • Discuss role of pharmacokinetic genes in drug metabolism
  • Review published studies on psychiatric pharmacogenomic testing


Planning Workgroup

We would like to thank your 2015 Online Course Planning Committee for their time building the Personalized and Precision Medicine Course.  Members include:

  • Becki Hulinsky, Chair
  • Samantha Baxter
  • Leslie Evans
  • Heather Fecteau
  • Kristen Hanson
  • Shannon Kieran

Accessing the Course

Once you purchase the activity, you will need to wait up to fifteen minutes for the server to enable access within your NSGC member record.


While you are logged in to the NSGC website, click on the NSGC Logo on the top right corner of whatever page you are on. You will then be taken to the NSGC Member Center. In the Quick Links box, click on the "My Online Courses" link. You will then be taken to a page with instructions on how to access your online courses, and how to optimize your experience. The link to your online courses is labeled "Connect to Your Courses." Make sure the NSGC Online Learning Center page is open at all times while working within a unique module. Also, all pop-ups within the Online Learning Center need to be closed before closing out of the Online Learning Center in order to record your activity within the course. Please call NSGC Executive Office at 312.321.6834 with any questions.

From NSGC's Online Learning Center, you will see the course under the training manual section. Click on any one of the ten module titles to participate in the individual session.

Course participants who choose to earn CEUs will have 2 years to complete and pass the quizzes to earn CEUs.  Participants can print their CEU certificate online immediately after completing the quiz and won't need to wait for NSGC to issue CEUs!

Prior to purchasing the online educational programs, please view the system requirements FAQs.

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