Approximately 400 million people throughout the world suffer from a rare disease. Although advances in whole exome and whole genome sequencing have greatly facilitated rare disease diagnosis, overall diagnostic rates remain below 50%. Furthermore, in cases where accurate diagnosis is achieved the process requires an average of 4.8 years. Reducing the time required for disease diagnosis is among the most critical needs of patients impacted by a rare disease. In this perspective we describe current challenges associated with rare disease diagnosis and discuss several cutting-edge functional genomic screening technologies that have the potential to rapidly accelerate the process of distinguishing pathogenic variants that lead to disease.
Molecular medicine (Cambridge, Mass.)
Functional genomics; Massively parallel genomic assays; Pooled CRISPR screening; Rare disease diagnosis
Hartin SN, Means JC, Alaimo JT, Younger ST. Expediting rare disease diagnosis: a call to bridge the gap between clinical and functional genomics. Mol Med. 2020;26(1):117. Published 2020 Nov 25. doi:10.1186/s10020-020-00244-5