A complex framework of interacting partners including genetic, proteomic, and metabolic networks that cooperate to mediate specific functional phenotypes drives human biological processes. Recent technological and analytical advances in “omic” sciences allow the identification and elucidation of reprogramming biological functions in response to perturbations in cells and tissues. To understand such a complex system, biological networks are generated to reduce the complexity into relatively simple models, and the integration of these molecular networks from different perspectives is implemented for a holistic interpretation of the entire system. Ultimately, network-based methods will effectively facilitate the development and improvement of precision medicine by directing therapies based on the underlying biology of a given patient’s disease.
The goal of precision medicine is to identify novel therapeutic strategies that can be optimized for each disease type or each patient based on the underlying genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors. Pharmaco-omics analyses based on an integration of pharmacology and various “omics” data types can be employed to develop effective treatment strategies using particular drugs and doses that are tailored to each individual.
In the current review, we first present the core elements of network-based systems biology in the context of pharmaco-omics followed by integration of multi-omics data using various biological networks. Next, we provide an opening into precise medicine and drug targeting based on network approaches. Lastly, we review the current significant efforts as well as the accomplishments and limitations in precise drug targeting with the utility of network-based guided drug discovery methods for effective treatment of breast cancer.