Genetic technologies have moved off the pages of science fiction
and into our everyday lives. Internists now offer genetic testing
for cancers and early coronary disease. Obstetricians make genetic
predictions during pregnancy about a baby's future health. Even
dentists are getting into the act, offering testing for a genetic
propensity to peridontal disease. In this pathbreaking book, Lori
Andrews provides the first detailed glimpse into how genetic
testing can change your self-image, your relationships with loved
ones, and your expectations about your children. She documents how
ill prepared doctors are to deal with complex genetic issues.
Andrews also uncovers the ways in which employers, insurers,
schools, and courts have discriminated against people on the basis
of their genetic make up. She traces the legal case history of
genetics litigation and legislation and describes the ethical and
social protections that need to be in place so that the Human
Genome Project does not lead us directly toward "Brave New
In "Future Perfect," Lori Andrews offers a new plan for making
decisions as individuals and as a society based on emerging issues
of ethics and science. Who should have access to your personal
genetic information? Should genetic treatments be used to enhance
characteristics such as intelligence in "normal" individuals?
Should gene therapy be undertaken on embryos, changing their
genetic inheritance, as well as that of future generations? If a
woman learns she has a genetic mutation predisposing her to breast
cancer, does she have a moral or even a legal duty to share that
information with an estranged relative? Andrews considers the
answer to these and many other questions that have profound
implications for health care providers, medical organizations,
social institutions, legislatures, courts, and ordinary people.
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