DNA and Privacy

March 9, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
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A recent piece on the Ars Technica website discusses how research into DNA is throwing up new challenges to privacy. The problem, of course, is that researchers want DNA to do research with, but that DNA identifies people. Should researchers share the DNA they collect with other researchers in the name of scientific openness? Does this impact on the privacy of the person whose DNA is being shared?

What is very interesting here from a sociological point of view is the way that our DNA might be coming to be seen as defining who we are. Might our DNA become the ultimate biometric identity verifier? Because our DNA can tell so much about us to others, there is no doubt that research in the field is going to require fresh thinking about what information about us is private.