Close this search box.

Pharmacogenomics of Drug Efficacy and Drug Toxicity in the Treatment of Cardiovascular Disease


Generating solutions




Competition III

Genome Centre(s)



Project Leader(s)

Fiscal Year Project Launched


Project Description

Jean Claude Tardif, Montreal Heart Institute, Université de Montréal Michael S. Phillips, Montreal Heart Institute, Université de Montréal, and Genome Québec Pharmacogenomics of Drug Efficacy and Toxicity in the Treatment of Cardiovascular Disease No drug works well for all patients. Genetic differences among patients are believed to account for variations in drug responses. While genomics is opening the way to personalized, predictive and preventive medicine, pharmacogenomics in particular uses a patient’s genetic information to predict individual responses to medication. This is important, since adverse drug reactions are a leading cause of hospitalization and mortality in Canada, the United States and Europe.

Jean Claude Tardif, an authority on atherosclerosis at the Montreal Heart Institute of the Université de Montréal, and Michael S. Phillips, from the Montreal Heart Institute, Université de Montréal and Director of Pharmacogenomics at Genome Québec, are project leaders of Pharmacogenomics of Drug Efficacy and Toxicity in Cardiovascular Disease. Drs. Tardif and Phillips will lead an international team of clinician-researchers and scientists to address drug response problems in the management of cardiovascular disease, which includes coronary heart disease, congestive heart failure, hypertension and stroke.

The team will investigate the toxicity of lipid lowering drugs, especially statins, which are used to treat atherosclerosis, the concentration of lipids or fats, which narrow or block the arteries. The team will also study the efficacy of new anti-atherosclerotic agents. Drs. Tardif and Phillips expect to identify relevant biomarkers, which can then be used to develop diagnostic tests. This will help determine how patients will respond to treatments for cardiovascular disease based on their genetic profile. The project will also develop ethical guidelines to help plan future pharmacogenomic research, and will develop models and strategies to integrate genetic knowledge into health care practices.

Integrated GE3LS Research: Current public policy lags in Pharmacogenomics research
GE3LS Project Leaders: Denise Avard and Yann Joly, Université de Montréal
The GE³LS research team will address issues of informed consent and knowledge transfer in the context of pharmacogenomics research.

Given the sheer number of human participants needed to conduct pharmacogenomics clinical trials, it is important to address the ethical, legal and social issues related to informed consent. This project will support the scientific activities of the GRID project by helping to develop meaningful consent processes that will enhance the informed nature of prospective consent and the protection of participants’ rights. Issues of access to stored tissues, confidentiality and coding will be explored, as will the type of explanations given to research participants. Planned activities include developing academic papers and policy statements on the prospective nature of informed consent, patient confidentiality and governance of DNA banks; hosting a number of working group meetings with key stakeholders to enable exchange of views and perspectives across different disciplines; holding public events and developing a number of public education materials to inform the broader public community about pharmacogenomics research; and archiving all research outputs on the HUMGEN Website.