Development of Genetics in the World and in Croatia – Forty Years of the Croatian Society of Human Genetics of the Croatian Medical Association
Resulting from several basic scientific disciplines, genetics has made impressive progress in the last century by discoveries of the heredity rules and genome structure, and by identification of the genes that determine the occurrence and characteristics of human diseases. In Croatia, the development of genetics began in the middle of the past century by the pioneering work of clinicians and basic scientists, which resulted in significant development of this scientific discipline that has quickly found its practical application in clinical genetics-cytogenetics, molecular genetics and prenatal diagnosis. The rapid advancement of technology and knowledge of genetics in recent decades has led to the development of genomics and related disciplines, entering the revolutionary new era of personalized medicine. Currently, much more data can be collected than interpreted. The data of electronic medical records, genomics, epigenetics, proteomics, metabolomics and microbiomics should be integrated and interpreted at the level of individual genome. Extensive use of new information will open a range of ethical issues that we must face timely. It is expected that in the forthcoming years, we will be able to learn more about genetics than what we have learned throughout the history of medicine. We must be prepared to welcome this new knowledge, reflecting on the positive and negative aspects of the latest achievements in the field of genetics. We hope that the experts dealing with human genetics in Croatia will successfully continue their work to enable practical application of the latest achievements in genetics, expanding our understanding of the concept of health and disease.
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