In this paper, we advance the extant health technology innovation frames on global personalized medicine by
highlighting the need to rethink genomics medicine in real-life settings – including situations where populations are
frequently faced with natural disasters or man-made conflicts. We identify the steps towards building sufficient capacity
to effectively harness and integrate genomic medicine and molecular diagnostics in order to benefit global society
including those in resource-limited settings and post-war capacity building contexts. Surprisingly, despite a great number
of populations currently living in developing countries, including in a state of post-war or conflict resolution context, the
public health pharmacogenomics community has largely neglected this crucial dimension in biomedical literature. By
exploring the particular case of Sri-Lanka in this paper, we are able to investigate the obstacles commonly faced by low
and middle income countries similarly afflicted by crises, natural disasters, conflict and the need for improved, more cost
effective health care. Sri Lanka has a relatively strong platform for launching molecular diagnostic technology, including
a well networked set of primary, secondary and tertiary care institutions, a small but burgeoning private health and
research sector and a strong science base in its universities. Despite this, there has been slow uptake and exploitation of
novel molecular diagnostics due to various factors such as a weak regulatory framework and high costs associated with
the import of molecular reagents and import and maintenance of equipment. In summary, as a way forward for health
technology assessment in resource-limited countries, this paper brings to the fore an integrated discourse on real-life
experiences and putative solutions on genomics and molecular diagnostic medicine. For a comprehensive discussion in
the nascent field of public health pharmacogenomics, post-war and post-conflict capacity building on biotechnologies
such as genomics is essential.
Genomics and development studies, global personalized medicine, health technology assessment in resourcelimited
countries, low and middle income countries, LMICs, post-war capacity building in pharmacogenomics, Sri-Lanka.
Molecular Medicine Unit, Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya, Ragama, Sri Lanka.