Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Attempts to censor medical information

Arrogant swine!  And that's an insult to swine! People are too dumb to be given information about their own bodies??

FOR Carole Kushnir, a test that she took out of simple curiosity about her genetic make-up revealed a double risk of cancer. And for Karen Durrett, it led to her meeting a father she had never known - and brought to light a potentially fatal condition.

The women are among 180,000 people who have paid to have their DNA analysed by 23andMe, the world's biggest private genomics company, to assess more than 200 genetic traits and health risks.

That number of customers is expected to soar after the Californian company - which takes its name from the 23 pairs of chromosomes in a normal human cell - cut the cost of a testing kit to $US99 ($94) last month.

The company, co-founded by Anne Wojcicki, the wife of the Google entrepreneur Sergey Brin, plans to reach 1 million clients by the end of this year.

But the boom in business and interest in genomes and genetics has led to controversy about the commercial use of one the most crucial medical breakthroughs of recent years.

For the price of a night out, individuals can learn key elements of their genetic composition and take treatment, or protect their children from hereditary health risks.

Critics, including doctors, bioethicists and geneticists, are concerned people will be overloaded with information that is difficult for them to interpret, and that the test will raise unnecessary health fears or false reassurances, lead to unneeded procedures, or cause stress about conditions that cannot be cured.

"It is unregulated. Much of the information people get is misleading or unreliable and genetic tests are a poor predictor of the big killer diseases," said Helen Wallace, of GeneWatch UK, a genetic watchdog group. "There is also the danger of people receiving scary surprises, without the presence of a doctor, for which they are not prepared."

But recent focus group findings and professional surveys illustrate the diverging opinions about how to use these new weapons.

Almost all the parents surveyed said they wanted to be informed of every risk of disease for their children, even if the condition was untreatable. Most doctors, geneticists and bioethicists believe that only information that could lead to action should be shared.

In an effort to provide guidelines the American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics is drawing up a list of major conditions to search for.


If I were writing in Australian idiom, I would call the would-be censors "bastards" but I gather that is not well understood in America and I don't know of an American equivalent.  Australian slang is very rich in derogatory terms: Drongo, nong, galah etc.


Bird of Paradise said...

Liberals want to allow for teens to be given birth control pills without parentiual consent

Nik said...

"Bastards" is a common masculine equivalent of "bitches," across most of the US.

Use the Name, Luke said...

Given that most people have not been taught any of the tools for managing information—such as basic logic—there is some small merit to their concern. They're wrong, but not entirely.

Anonymous said...

You're right Luke. Generally speaking, people lack the intellectual capacity to deal with loads of highly technical information that could prove to be life altering.

Hell, just look at the results from the last election which clearly proves my point.

Anonymous said...

"people lack the intellectual capacity to deal with loads of highly technical information that could prove to be life altering. "

Instead, they just believe in gibberish, like religion.

Anonymous said...

No, instead, we'll all join you and Satans other children. (a.k.a. atheists)

Go Away Bird said...

More kids have died becuase of ABORTION then from GUNS even after this horrible SANDY HOOK incedent those anti-NRA wanks should be picketing PLANNED PARENTHOOD by then they would get the news covrage

Anonymous said...

Be careful people.

Now that Obamacare is the law of the land the government can get it hands on this info and if you are predisposed to cancer and you get it, don't expect them to pay for it because it is a "pre-existing condition."

Genetic tests always come back to haunt you when it comes to insurance.

Anonymous said...

"we'll all join you and Satans other children"

Satin is a figment of a delusional mind.

Use the Name, Luke said...

Instead, they just believe in gibberish, like religion.

Funny, the more I look at the evidence (like how the cell actually works, cosmology, history, logic, etc.) the more clear it gets that I don't have enough faith to be an atheist.

Anonymous said...

Luke is using the "argument from ignorance" fallacy (and he talks about logic!) - just because he doesn't know enough about cell biology, cosmology, history, etc. to want to alter his pre-conceived "faith" in ancient religious explanations.
"I don't have enough faith to be an atheist" is a tired idiotic stand-by of fundamentalist theists, particularly creationists, who just try to childishly turn around the criticism re "faith".

Kee Bird said...

Satan is a card carrying member of the DEMACRATIC PARTY and he belings to PLANNED PARENTHOOD as well

Anonymous said...

Luke's god is everything that he does not understand. His god is getting smaller every day.

Use the Name, Luke said...

That's all you've got?

::: snore :::

Do you know what "chirality" is and what it has to do with the function of a cell? How about the latest research on the non-gene coding portions of DNA?

Anonymous said...

"Do you know what "chirality" is and what it has to do with the function of a cell?"

Do you know that my dick is bigger than your dick?

Anonymous said...

Luke doesn't want to admit that our universe was created by the 25th-dimensional Devil called Urg, and he can't prove otherwise. Doesn't he have enough faith to believe in Urg? Urg won't destroy him if he just bows down to worship Urg.