Sunday, October 9, 2011

Personal genomics: information can be harmful

This commentary asserts that while personal genomics information can be very helpful, its harmful potential deserves careful examination. The authors state that harms from information are extensive in clinical medicine (e.g. undesirable side effects fostered by "labelling"), and that the "net harm" or "net benefit" of such information must always be taken into consideration. They express concern that the typical careful examination of new biomedical technologies has not been applied to DTC marketing of genomic profiling, and that the assumption that information can only be helpful is far too common and must be corrected as we learn more about personal genomics.

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