The Charles Bronfman Institute for Personalized Medicine

IGNITE Network

The Implementing Genomics in Practice (IGNITE) consortium at The Institute for Personalized Medicine was created to enhance the use of genomic medicine by supporting the development of methods for incorporating genomic information into clinical care and exploration of the methods for effective implementation, diffusion, and sustainability in diverse clinical settings.

As part of this initiative, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) selected six genomic medicine demonstration projects for funding, including ours at Mount Sinai, The GUARDD Study: Genetic testing to Understand and Address Renal Disease Disparities. These six projects work together to develop best practices for implementation and new methods to disseminate their findings to the public.

This effort is organized and funded by the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), a part of the National Institutes of Health. (RFA-HG-12-006, RFA-HG-12-007 and RFA-HG-13-004)

With guidance from Mount Sinai’s Center for Community Academic Research Partnership (CCARP) led by Carol Horowitz, MD, (Principal Investigator), Erwin Bottinger, MD, (Co-Investigator) and the Institute established a partnership with The Institute for Family Health (IFH) and its CEO Dr. Neil Calman. IFH is a federally qualified community health center that serves 100,000 patients annually at 26 locations in the greater New York City region. The goal of the partnership was to develop evidence-based and best practices for genome-informed health care in large urban primary care networks serving diverse communities.

Our specific aims are to:

  • Understand knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about testing for APOL1, returning results, and engaging people of African ancestry and their clinicians into a process of testing, counseling, and appropriate clinical care
  • Develop systems and evidence-based advice messages to enable point of care Clinical Decision Support (CDS) for primary care providers advising renal care practice guidelines with our without genomic APOL1 risk information
  • Conduct a randomized trial assigning eligible patients to immediate genetic testing or delayed genetic testing arms in a seven-to-one ratio (immediate testing to delayed testing)

How You Can Take Part

We are currently enrolling study participants who see their providers at any of the following clinical sites:

You must also meet the following criteria:

  • Have high blood pressure
  • Be between ages 18-65
  • Of African American descent or Black race
  • No diabetes
  • No kidney problems

What is Involved

If you enroll, you will receive a free genetic test that can show if you have an increased risk for kidney disease. You must also come to three 1-hour study visits where we will ask you questions about your health. You must also attend a study visit where we will explain the results of the test. As a thank you for taking part, you will receive $120 in gift cards. If you think you may qualify and would like more information, please contact our research team at 212-659-8543, e-mail us at