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Over the last 20 years, scientists have deciphered genetic instructions controlling many bodily processes and diseases, and research is underway which may ultimately allow all the genetic material of a person to be deciphered. The resulting information will be fundamental to understanding how our bodies work and is likely to be of great value to medicine. It will also raise important social and ethical issues, which have received attention in the European Parliament and elsewhere.

This POSTnote describes current and planned research on the human genome, and considers issues which may arise from this work.


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