Who we are is in part dependent on our genes but what we actually get is to a very large extent dependent on the environment we put our genes in. Every cell has 30,000 genes. Genetics is the study of what genes we have. What we actually get or see on a day to day basis depends on which genes are “turned on” and which genes are “turned off,” this area is known as genomics. Every cell has greater than 40 million proteins that change depending on the environment influences. Proteins are long chains of amino acids that fold in on themselves when they are created. As those proteins are made the state of the cell will determine how they are folded, the study of this is called proteomics. Knowing which genes are turned on and which are turned off and knowing how proteins are folded in the cell after they are made will affect how effectively your cells work.
From a clinical standpoint knowing specific genes can help us determine treatment plans. We are now beginning to be able to measure what genes are actually being expressed and this can lead to a more specific and detailed treatment plan. There are multiple comprehensive genetic tests available and we are beginning to see more genomics tests.