Fox on Prenatal Genetic Testing

front-page story in today’s Sunday Boston Globe quotes Bill of Health blogger Dov Fox on whether the routine use of new prenatal blood testing could “‘bring a tendency to exclude rather than accommodate people whose abilities fail to meet [certain] demands'” of modern society or “‘exert[] social pressure on parents to terminate pregnancy for fear of criticism or reproach from people who regard the[ir] choice [to have a] child with a disability [] as negligent, or irresponsible.'”
If these non-invasive tests (which look at potentially unlimited amounts of fetal DNA) were able to provide genetic information for conditions beyond just sex and health, might we come to think in similar ways about children of “merely” average looks or normal height or ordinary intelligence? Dov explored this question and others in a talk that he gave as a 2006 summer fellow at the Petrie-Flom Center. His article is called Silver Spoons and Golden Genes.
Dov Fox

Dov Fox

Dov Fox is Professor of Law and the Director of the Center for Health Law Policy and Bioethics at the University of San Diego School of Law, where he has been named Herzog Endowed Scholar for exceptional scholarship and teaching. He also won BIOCOM's Life Science Catalyst Award for "significant contributions to human health through research, discovery, and entrepreneurship." His work has been featured in CNN, ABC, NPR, NBC, Reuter’s, Bloomberg, Slate, Daily Beast, Today Show, Boston Globe, and Washington Post. His latest book project, "Birth Rights and Wrongs," is forthcoming with Oxford University Press.

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