Skip to main content

“Forward-Thinking” in U.S. Biobanking

March 15, 2017

Aims: Do biobanks enact policies and plans that allow them to anticipate and respond to potential challenges? If a biobank has one such policy or plan, is it likely to have more? Using survey data from 456 U.S. biobanks, we assess four possible indicators of such “forward-thinking.” Methods: We present response frequencies and cross-tabulations regarding … Read more

Which Results to Return

February 7, 2017

BACKGROUND: Advances in genomics have led to calls for returning information about medically actionable genes (MAGs) to patients, research subjects, biobank participants, and through screening programs, the general adult population. Which MAGs are returned affects the harms and benefits of every genetic testing endeavor. Despite published recommendations of selection criteria for MAGs to return, scant … Read more

Public Comments on Proposed Regulatory Reforms That Would Impact Biospecimen Research

December 20, 2016

The regulations governing human subjects research (Common Rule) remain largely unchanged since their adoption. As a first step in their revision, the federal government published the Advance Notice of Proposed Rule Making (ANPRM) in 2011. The public responded with over 1100 comments. We selected a random sample of 300 comments, examining whether they addressed biospecimen … Read more

The Empty Performative?

December 20, 2016

This chapter explores some of the linguistic aspects of informed consent to genetic biobanking, defined as the collection and storage of DNA samples and derived information for present and future research purposes. Drawing on the linguistic literature, the chapter examines informed consent from the perspective of speech act theory. Qualitative analysis of interviews with people … Read more

Looking for Trouble

December 20, 2016

Advances in genomics have led to calls for developing population-based preventive genomic sequencing (PGS) programs with the goal of identifying genetic health risks in adults without known risk factors. One critical issue for minimizing the harms and maximizing the benefits of PGS is determining the kind and degree of control individuals should have over the … Read more

Genomic Research With the Newly Dead

December 20, 2016

Recent advances in next generation sequencing along with high hopes for genomic medicine have inspired interest in genomic research with the newly dead. However, applicable law does not adequately determine ethical or policy responses to such research. In this paper we propose that such research stands at a crossroads between other more established biomedical clinical … Read more

Parents’ Online Portrayals of Pediatric Treatment and Research Options

December 20, 2016

PARENTS OF SERIOUSLY ILL CHILDREN FACE difficult decisions when standard therapies are limited or ineffective. In their search for information, they may turn to websites created by other parents facing similar experiences. We conducted a qualitative content analysis of 21 websites created by families with children affected by cancer or genetic disease, two serious conditions … Read more

Ethical, Legal, and Social Concerns About Expanded Newborn Screening

December 20, 2016

Technology will make it possible to screen for fragile X syndrome and other conditions that do not meet current guidelines for routine newborn screening. This possibility evokes at least 8 broad ethical, legal, and social concerns: (1) early identification of fragile X syndrome, an “untreatable” condition, could lead to heightened anxiety about parenting, oversensitivity to … Read more