Applying genomic technologies in environmental health research: challenges and opportunities

J Occup Environ Med. 2001 Jun;43(6):526-33. doi: 10.1097/00043764-200106000-00003.


Recent discoveries in molecular biology and genetics have made it possible for environmental health researchers to examine how genetic characteristics affect response to environmental exposures. Understanding such gene-environment interactions offers exciting possibilities for the prevention and control of environmentally induced diseases. Despite these potential benefits, the collection and analysis of genetic information in environmental health research presents many of the same ethical, legal, and social (ELSI) challenges found in other types of genetic research. In this article, we describe a number of ELSI challenges in environmental genomic research and the opportunities and responsibilities that accompany this research.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Environmental Health*
  • Ethics, Medical
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Genetics, Medical*
  • Human Genome Project
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / genetics
  • Occupational Diseases / genetics