The Question Not Asked: The Challenge of Pleiotropic Genetic Tests
Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal. 1998 Jun; 8(2): 131-144.
Nearly all of the literature on the ethical, legal, or social issues surrounding genetic tests has proceeded on the assumption that any particular test for a gene mutation yields information about only one disease condition. Even though the phenomenon of pleiotropy, where a single gene has multiple, apparently unrelated phenotypic effects, is widely recognized in genetics, it has not had much significance for genetic testing until recently. In this article, I examine a moral dilemma created by one sort of pleiotropic testing, APOE genotyping, which can yield information about the risk of two different conditions -- coronary heart disease and Alzheimer's disease. A physician administering APOE testing for the beneficial purpose of assessing the risk of heart disease may discover medically useless and socially harmful information about the patient's risk of Alzheimer's disease. I explore how much providers should disclose to patients about pleiotropic test results and whether patients are obligated to know as much about their genetic condition as possible.
Counseling; Consent; Dementia; Disclosure; Disease; Double Effect; Discrimination; Genetic Counseling; Genetic Information; Genetic Predisposition; Genetic Testing; Genetics; Genetic Screening; Heart Diseases; Incidental Findings; Informed Consent; Literature; Moral Obligations; Moral Policy; Mutation; Obligations to Society; Patients; Physicians; Policy Analysis; Risk; Risks and Benefits; Social Discrimination; Time Factors; Truth Disclosure;
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.