Documents to download

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.


Documents to download

Related posts

  • The COVID-19 Winter Plan, published 23 November, relies on three factors to provide the UK with a “route back to normality”: vaccines, treatments and testing. In addition to PCR testing, lateral flow devices are now being rolled out across England and Wales for the rapid testing of certain occupational groups, community testing and as an alternative to self-isolation following exposure to the virus. How well validated have these tests been? Are they accurate enough for their proposed purposes? And how have they performed to date in mass testing trials?

  • People’s behaviour has a major role in the success of test, trace and isolate programmes. Uncertainty about whether to report symptoms, low perceived risk of COVID-19 disease and concerns about the consequences of self-isolation are among the barriers to adherence. Has the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies looked at adherence to TTI? What evidence is there on people’s understanding and willingness to be tested, provide contact details and self-isolate? Is there anything that can be done to improve this?