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Medtech Impact on Wellness

Michael Snyder, PhD, is a Stanford W. Ascherman Professor and Chair of the Department of Genetics at Stanford, and Director of the Stanford Center for Genomics and Personalized Medicine.

By tuning in, you’ll learn the following:

  • How your smartphone can be converted to your own personal health dashboard, allowing you to effectively manage and monitor your health
  • How continuous glucose monitoring can help people manage diabetes or detect pre-diabetes, as well as determine which types of foods cause glucose spikes (different people experience glucose spikes in response to different foods)
  • What the number one stumbling block is to rolling out various types of technology that can quite literally save lives by identifying illness early on, rather than after it’s too late

“To be quite frank, I think the way we practice health care these days is entirely wrong…that is to say we typically focus on people when they’re ill and we really don’t spend much energy trying to keep people healthy…I want to transform that…and actually catch disease at its earliest time so we can really work on health care and not sick care,” says Dr. Snyder.

According to Dr. Snyder, the key is in following people while they’re healthy in order to establish a healthy baseline, and thereby detect signs of illness earlier on—before a disease or illness progresses. He says that advanced technologies have the ability to provide people with an unprecedented amount of access to their personal health data, and with little to no effort on their part.

The research in the Snyder Lab is focused on sequencing genomes to predict genetic risk for disease, and has shown promising results. Out of the first 70 people sequenced, they found that 12 had clinically actionable information in their genome, including a mutation that placed a patient at high risk for breast cancer, and a gene that predicted a heart defect in a young patient.

Dr. Snyder and his team are also using omics technology (e.g. proteomics, metabolomics) to measure as many molecules as possible from a sample of blood in order to ascertain a more precise understanding of a person’s health state. Dr. Snyder discusses the use of wearables that can detect changes in heart rate, temperature, blood oxygen levels, and other metrics in order to not only provide people with an understanding of their baseline measurements, but alert them to unexpected or out of place changes that may indicate disease.

Press play for the full conversation and learn more about the work being done at Snyder Lab by visiting

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