Genetics can influence the way pain medicines work

Research has produced a wealth of data indicating that genes affect how well pain medications, particularly opioids and NSAIDs, work. These studies suggest that CYP2D6 is an important control point for the body’s metabolism of opioids, specifically those that require a conversion from one form to another within the body to achieve pain relief. Genes that research has found to be involved in the body’s use of anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAID) include CYP2C9 and CYP2C19. Changes in these genes may cause a person to convert the pain medication too quickly, potentially leading to serious health problems. Or, if DNA changes cause the conversion of pain medication too slowly, then the person will not receive sufficient relief.

How Kailos can help you

With the Kailos test, you will discover what DNA changes have been shown to be related to how medications are metabolized. If you are just beginning therapy, this information can be information that a treating physician incorporates into the selection process. These DNA changes could also provide physicians insights into reasons why treatments may not be working as effectively as expected or are producing more side effects than expected. At Kailos Genetics, we sequence DNA and compare it to research and clinical study data so a physician can make genetics a part of their decision making.

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A variety of scientific and clinical research groups around the world have studied the relationships between many genes and pain medications especially opioids such as codeine. From those studies, one gene has been identified for extensive studies: CYP2D6. In many of these studies, different forms of this gene was related, although not necessarily causative, of how effective different opioids performed. Guidelines issued by the Clinical Pharmacogenomics Implementation Consortium contain extensive information on the studies reviewed:

Clinical Pharmacogenetics Implementation Consortium Guideline (CPIC) for Cytochrome P450 2D6 (CYP2D6) Genotype and Codeine Therapy: 2014 Update (April 2014) doi: 10.1038/clpt.2013.254

FDA Drug Safety Communication: FDA requires labeling changes for prescription opioid cough and cold medicines to limit their use to adults 18 years and older. (Issued 1/22/2018)

Other pain management medications such as NSAIDs have studies that, while informative on metabolism rates, are not supported by FDA communications or CPIC guidelines at this time.

Did you know?

According to the National Institutes of Health, more than 20% of people have genes that affect the way their bodies use medicines. Getting a Kailos test can provide genetic data that can be informative to treatment of pain.

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