Overcoming health disparities in precision medicine

A session of the Pacific Symposium of Bioinformatics

Big Island of Hawaii, January 3-7, 2024

Precision medicine and public health depend on identifying disease determinants and understanding their biology to develop risk reduction and treatment improvement strategies. However, racial and ethnic disparities exist across patient, provider, and health system levels due to a combination of social, psychosocial, lifestyle, environmental, and biological factors. As minority populations in the US grow and precision medicine expands globally, it is crucial to invest in efforts to characterize, understand, and eliminate these disparities. The 2024 Pacific Symposium on Biocomputing aims to build upon the successful 2023 session by highlighting new analyses, methods, algorithms, and datasets that can be applied throughout the research-to-translation continuum to address disparities in precision medicine.

Health equity

Session Topics

Topics within the scope of this session include:

Genomic research and its translation
  • Methods for trans-ancestry GWAS
  • Leveraging genetic variation across world populations
  • Assessment of variant pathogenicity across ancestries
  • Disentangling genetic ancestry vs social determinants of health in genomic research
Disease risk and outcome predictions
  • Portability of multimodal risk/outcome predictors across races, ancestries, and populations
  • Methods for development and/or adjustment of portable polygenic risk scores (PRS)
  • Incorporation of clinical factors avoiding embedded bias
Precision Oncology and Clinical Trials
  • Impact of race in cancer incidence and outcomes
  • Ancestry correlates somatic mutation landcapes
  • Ancestry impact on cancer subtyping and biomarkers
  • Measuring and increasing diversity in clinical trails
Resources for clinical research and medicine
  • Capture and curation of race/ethnicity data in health care
  • Development of diverse biobanks and EHR resources
  • Characterizing patients via genetics instead of race
  • Assessment of inequities across the precision medicine continuum
  • Pharmacogenomics
  • Ancestry correlates of drug responses and adverse events
  • Impact of racial differences on drug response on inequities
  • Methods to achieve "Pharmacoequity"
  • Fairness in artificial intelligence applied in medicine
  • Identifying and reducing racial biases in AI models
  • Assessing for diversity in training data
  • Monitoring for model drift due to racial biases
  • Session Organizers

    Keolu Fox

    University of California San Diego

    Submission Information

    Important dates

    Paper Submission Deadline: August 1, 2023
    Notification of Acceptance: September 11, 2023
    Poster/Abstract Submission Deadline: December 4, 2023
    Conference Date: January 3 - 7, 2024

    Proceeding papers

    The core of the conference consists of rigorously peer-reviewed full-length papers reporting on original work. All accepted papers will be published electronically and indexed in PubMed, and the best of these will be presented orally to the entire conference. PSB will also initiate submission to PubMed Central (PMC); however, PMC indexing applies only to papers that comply with the NIH Public Access Policy. Submitted papers are limited to twelve (12) pages (not including the cover letter) in the PSB publication format. Papers must be submitted to the PSB paper management system. For details see the Pacific Symposium of Biocomputing website.

    Each paper must be accompanied by a cover letter. The cover letter should be the first page of your paper submission. The cover letter must state the following:

    • The email address of the corresponding author
    • Indicate that your submission is directed to the "Overcoming Health Disparities" session
    • The submitted paper contains original, unpublished results, and is not currently under consideration elsewhere
    • All co-authors concur with the contents of the paper

    Please note that the submitted papers are reviewed and accepted on a competitive basis. At least three reviewers will be assigned to each submitted manuscript.


    Researchers wishing to present their research without official publication are encouraged to submit a one page abstract by the abstract deadline listed above to present their work in the poster session.

    Conference Venue

    The session will be held as part of the Pacific Symposium on Biocomputing, at the Fairmont Orchid Resort in the Big Island of Hawaii