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Human Genetic Databases - Conference 12.12.2005

Human genetic databases:
towards a global ethical framework

Mr Andrea Boggio , researcher at the Institute for Biomedical Ethics of the University of Geneva Faculty of Medicine , will present the research project on human genetic databases that began in 2003, in collaboration with the World Health Organisation (WHO) , with the support of the Geneva International Academic Network (GIAN) .


Monday, 12 December 2005 at 12:15 .
Cantonal Hospital, room 6-758, 6th floor, Main building.
The session will be held on English and is open to all.


This project aims at studying the conditions under which human genetic databases can be established, kept, and used in an ethically acceptable way . The technical possibilities for automated analysis of large DNA sample collections and the bio-informatic processing of the resulting data have developed dramatically during the past several years and are constantly being improved. Protecting the data available in such databases has consequently emerged as a highly complex ethical issue in the arena of health policy. The ethical issues become even more acute when genetic data are combined with information on individuals' health, lifestyle or genealogy. The political processes leading up to the establishment of these databases, as well as their particular legal and ethical arrangements, have stirred considerable controversy.

Despite the value of directives developed by certain countries and international organisations, no regulatory framework for genetic databases has been developed to date that is global in scope, yet prepared with regional input, and specific enough to provide practical and ethical guidance. The World Health Organisation and the University of Geneva aim to bridge this gap.

For any other information, please visit the GIAN's web site ( www.ruig-gian.org ) or contact Mr Andrea Boggio: 022 379 56 36, Andrea.Boggio@medecine.unige.ch .