“What ELSI is new?” at Genomics Law Report

DNA Strand

Dan Vorhaus at Genomics Law Report has launched “What ELSI is new?”, a series of guest posts on the most pressing ethical, legal, and social issues (ELSI) relating to genomics.  (You gotta love the name.)  The contributor list is a who’s who of voices in the ELSI, policy, and blog worlds.  I’m honored to be representing 23andMe in the discussion; my own post will appear next Tuesday.

Today’s post is by Prof. Hank Greely, with whom I had the pleasure of serving on a panel at the Stanford Genetics departmental retreat a few weeks ago.  He makes the important point that trained genetics professionals are too few and far between to expect consultations for every genomics consumer, especially when sequence information is getting cheaper and cheaper.  What’s the right response: to restrict access to genetic information because of the danger of misinterpretation, or to accept the risk but mitigate it as well as possible through education?






  • Phantom

    Even if genetic counseling was plentiful and cheap, surely it is a fundamental right of everyone to access information about themselves without having to go through a proxy.

    As for the danger of misinterpretation, that’s a joke. How much time does the average (eg: cancer) patient spend in his doctor’s office discussing pros and cons of various therapies?

    Let me do my own research. Then _I_ can decide if I need genetic counseling, and I’ll know what questions to ask.

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