by jeeg 29. February 2012 20:09
Voting behavior cannot be predicted by one or two genes as previous researchers have claimed, according to Evan Charney, a Duke University professor of public policy and political science. In "Candidate Genes and Political Behavior," a paper published in the February 2012 American Political Science Review, Charney and co-author William English of Harvard University call into question the validity of all studies that claim that a common gene variant can predict complex behaviors such as vo... [More]

Enhanced DNA database a slippery slope

by jeeg 28. February 2012 22:04
Over the years, Maggie Zingman's Toyota RAV4 has been hard to miss here and elsewhere. Emblazoned on the pink and purple vehicle are large photographs of her late daughter Brittany Phillips, 18, who was raped and murdered Sept. 30, 2004, at her east Tulsa apartment. Zingman has traveled thousands of miles, to almost every state, pursuing leads and trying to raise awareness about what she says on her Website are "weak DNA/rape laws." Some 1,700 DNA samples of convicted felons so far have... [More]

Ethics debate in genetics research

by jeeg 27. February 2012 19:11
By the time Camilla Black Grondahl became pregnant with her second child in 2010, she had already watched two older sisters bury sons who were born with a congenital affliction that gave them the appearance of “little old men.” Various health problems made their survival impossible. The young mother did not know whether she, too, could pass the condition to her unborn son. But a Utah researcher, who had been sequencing her family’s genes, did know. Gholson Lyon’s... [More]

Court OKs Taking DNA From Felony Arrestees

by jeeg 24. February 2012 19:06
A federal appeals court Thursday upheld a voter-approved measure requiring California authorities to take a DNA sample from every adult arrested on felony accusations in the Golden State. The American Civil Liberties Union, which brought the challenge in hopes of striking down the measure, argued that DNA sampling of arrestees was an unconstitutional Fourth Amendment search and privacy breach. A lower court had refused to stop the program that has resulted in California securing a DN... [More]

Myriad Genetics’ cancer gene patents go to trial in Australia

by jeeg 22. February 2012 21:55
Myriad Genetics Inc. of Salt Lake City and other biotechnology companies can’t monopolize disease treatment by patenting human genetic material, an Australian trial was told this week in the country’s first challenge to ownership of DNA molecules. Cancer Voices Australia, a national organization representing cancer patients, and Yvonne D’Arcy, a Brisbane resident diagnosed with breast cancer, sued Myriad Genetics and Genetic Technologies Ltd. in 2010 over a patent the co... [More]

Early prenatal test raises ethical questions

by jeeg 22. February 2012 21:52
Prenatal testing has turned into an unlikely campaign issue. Presidential candidate Rick Santorum said this week that some tests, in his words, "encourage abortions." "CBS This Morning" took a look at a new test that reveals birth abnormalities at a much earlier stage. The test is sure to give many more pregnant women and their families a lot to think about. Recent advancements in genetics have helped doctors develop a safer test for Down syndrome than amniocentesis, an invasive procedu... [More]

Supreme Court Still Considering Whether To Take Gene Patenting Case

by jeeg 22. February 2012 01:17
The Supreme Court has delayed a decision on whether to hear a case that could affect the entire biotech industry -- one asking whether Myriad Genetics can own the patents on two breast cancer genes. Because it had been scheduled for a conference discussion by the justices earlier this month, a decision about whether to consider the case was expected on Tuesday. But the Court declined to accept or reject the case, suggesting that the justices will want to discuss it again. At issue u... [More]

Can You Be Fired for Your Genes?

by jeeg 22. February 2012 00:16
In 2010, Pamela Fink, an employee of a Connecticut energy company, made a new kind of discrimination claim: she charged that she had been fired because she carries genes that predispose her to cancer. Fink quickly became the public face for the cutting edge of civil rights: genetic discrimination. The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, which was passed out of concern for just such cases in the wake of huge advances in genetics testing, took effect in late 2009. GINA, as it is know... [More]

CRG Applauds MA for Passing Post-Conviction DNA Access Law

by jeeg 21. February 2012 00:36
The Council for Responsible Genetics (CRG) applauds Governor Patrick for signing and Representative John Fernandes and Senator Cynthia Creem for championing S.1987, an Act providing access to forensic and scientific analysis. This vital legislation allows Massachusetts to join the 48 other states that grant their citizens the statutory right to their own DNA to prove their innocence after they have been convicted of a crime. CRG twice testified in support of the legislation and applauds th... [More]

New Issue of GeneWatch Magazine: The Future of Genetics

by jeeg 17. February 2012 21:20
Trying to predict where genetics and genomics will be in twenty years is a bit like filling out your “March Madness” bracket five years in advance. It’s been only 12 years since the first rough draft of the human genome was announced and forecasting a field as fast-moving as genetics is outlandish.  Nevertheless, we convinced seventeen experts to do just that.    The new issue of GeneWatch magazine, now available online, features pre­dictions for the... [More]
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