For more than 92 years, the Baker Institute has been focussed on research dedicated to the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. That focus continues today but medicine is changing and so too the way we go about targeting disease. Globally, we are witnessing a healthcare revolution driven by scientific and technological advances in areas such as genomics and bioinformatics, enhancing our ability to more precisely diagnose disease and better target prevention and treatment.
The internet and “big data” is revolutionising our world, providing insights and capabilities that we would think more likely in a science fiction movie than reality. This is no different in medical research. Specifically, in our own field, we believe that by harnessing big data we can provide greater confidence around disease risk. With these new developments, come new ways of predicting disease, sometimes long before disease appears. This means we can be far more effective in the prevention space. We can accelerate and enhance approaches to prevent secondary disease and disease complications. And we can start to tailor treatment for the individual rather than the traditional ‘one size fits all’ approach.
To leverage these new capabilities, we need to draw on our expertise across a range of areas including basic science, clinical research and public health. We need to understand the mechanisms and potential drivers of disease, to test these hypotheses in patients and to understand the clinical needs. We also need to understand how the environment interacts with our genes and the role of lifestyle. That’s why the Institute is ideally placed to harness this new technology, to personalise medicine and to help people live healthier for longer.
That’s our vision.