Recent Stories


Cassie Hajek, a doctor in a white coat, holds a stethoscope to listen to an adult patient's chest in a medical exam room.

Understanding disease risk through genetics

One of the most effective tools for health care providers lies within the human body. Your DNA is a set of instructions holding the genetic information that makes you who you are. Variations in your genetics make you unique, but they also influence your health. Still, genetics is just one piece of the puzzle. Lifestyle, […]
Cassie Hajek, M.D. 6 min read
guy giving child piggy back ride

Is genetic medicine relevant to me and my health?

Absolutely! Genetic medicine as part of the everyday medical experience is an idea rooted in innovation and necessity. Imagine explaining a symptom to your doctor and at their fingertips is an outline of your genetic history. The impact this could have on your treatment is profound! Not only is genetic medicine relevant to your overall […]
SHN Staff 1 min read
Doctor examining patient's ear with an otoscope

Genetics fact: Earwax type is an inherited trait

You and your parents likely share the same wet or dry types of earwax because you both share the same ABCC11 gene sequence through heredity. Genes are parts of our DNA that have the instructions for a particular feature or trait. Your features are the way your genes display your uniqueness out in the open. […]
SHN Staff 1 min read
variations in dna

Health fact: How variations in genes make you unique

Variations in our genes contribute to the genetic diversity among us, allowing some people to better tolerate certain kinds of foods, endure changes in altitude, and fight off infection. If two master chefs follow the same recipe it is pretty likely that their final dish will be slightly different. The reasoning is the differences within […]
SHN Staff 1 min read
family cooking healthy foods together

Health fact: How the environment affects your genes

Proper diet, exercise and a healthful lifestyle are well-known benefactors to a long, healthy life. Who you are reflects both what you inherited from your parents (DNA/genes/genetics) and your environment (where you live, your lifestyle, your diet, etc.). Think of it this way: The humidity and temperature of a room may impact how made-from-scratch bread […]
SHN Staff 1 min read
DNA strand

How genes, genetic knowledge are revolutionizing health care

One of the most powerful assets to your health care is already within you. Your DNA is a set of instructions, which influences many facets of your health. By diving further into what makes each person unique, we aim to help you make more precise health care decisions. “From person to person, there are a […]
SHN Staff 5 min read
heart stent: older man getting checked on by a nurse

Customized care for heart stent patients now available

Physicians and researchers at Sanford Health continue to find new, better ways to treat our heart stent patients. One promising method is genomic medicine, which is being incorporated into primary care for our patients. And for our heart patients, we’re bringing a new level of customized care. It started with a group of researchers led […]
SHN Staff 5 min read
people standing at the imagenetics ribbon cutting

Sanford Imagenetics holds ribbon cutting for new building

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Sanford Health hosted a ribbon cutting and open houses for employees and the public this week to mark the opening of the new Sanford Imagenetics building. It is the first program in the nation to embed the latest in genomic medicine with primary care. Sanford Health providers evaluate a patient’s family […]
SHN Staff 2 min read
picture of woman smiling with a background of DNA

Ethics of genetics: podcast

“Before, it was kind of this far-fetched idea that we see in movies, but now it is actually at our front door."
Alan Helgeson 3 min read
red micro organism and doctor

Trial fights cancer with engineered virus: Podcast

Sanford Health recently launched a clinical trial using a genetically engineered virus that aims to destroy therapy-resistant tumors. The Phase I immunotherapy trial is for those ages 18 and older with metastatic solid tumors that have not responded to standard treatments. The treatment injects a cancer-destroying virus into the tumor. The virus is engineered to […]
Alan Helgeson 2 min read