Genetic Information: Legal Issues Relating to Discrimination and Privacy [Updated March 10, 2008]   [open pdf - 175KB]

From the Summary: "In April 2003, the sequence of the human genome was deposited into public databases. This milestone, which has been compared to the discoveries of Galileo, and other advances in genetics have created novel legal issues relating to genetic information. The Human Genome Project produced detailed maps of the 23 pairs of human chromosomes and sequenced 99% of the three billion nucleotide bases that make up the human genome. The sequence information should aid in the identification of genes underlying disease, raising hope for genetic therapies to cure disease, but this scientific accomplishment is not without potential problems. For instance, the presence of a specific genetic variation may indicate a predisposition to disease but does not guarantee that the person will manifest the disease: How should an employer or insurer respond? The ethical, social and legal implications of these technological advances have been the subject of significant scrutiny and concern. […] This report discusses current federal law, state statutes, and legislation. It will be updated as needed."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL30006
Public Domain
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