Suds and science: a night of thinking and drinking

| Written by Jessica Moore
Jessica Rusert

A brewery might seem like an odd place to be talking about science, but on a recent Monday evening, Jessica Rusert, Ph.D., a postdoc in the laboratory of Robert Wechsler-Reya, Ph.D., did exactly that. In front of an enthralled crowd at Stone Brewing in Liberty Station, she discussed how advances in genomics and bioinformatics are changing medicine. The evening was part of the Suds & Science series organized by the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center, which aims to bring science to the masses and give people the opportunity to discuss a hot topic with a scientist doing related research.

Rusert’s topic was precision medicine, also called personalized medicine, which means treating patients as individuals instead of using what works for the majority. Rusert focused on cancer, where some personalized therapies, selected based on markers present in a patient’s tumor, are already available. She is an expert on this topic, as her research aims to find treatments for specific molecular subtypes of medulloblastoma, a devastating pediatric brain cancer.

There were a lot of questions about this future of medicine, including whether this more complex approach to healthcare would be affordable for everyone. But there was also an undercurrent of hope for the future—doctors are gaining the power to predict which treatment will work for each patient, and the recent presidential initiative will accelerate progress.

Rusert promoted the event earlier that day on the CW6 show San Diego Living, which you can watch here.

Suds & Science is held once a month at various establishments in San Diego.


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