Genetic information in the age of genohype

Med Health Care Philos. 2006;9(3):325-37. doi: 10.1007/s11019-006-0001-8.


We will analyse the representations and conceptualisation of genetics and genetic information in bioethical discourse. Genetics and genetic information is widely believed to be revolutionizing medicine and is sometimes misconceived as having a high predictive value compared to traditional diagnostics. We will attempt to present the inherent limitations of genetic information within its health care context. We will also argue against the exceptional treatment of genetic information that seems to govern bioethical reflection and regulatory approaches. And finally, we will make the claim that geneticization should be seen as a more serious threat to our privacy, autonomy and freedom, than genetic discrimination.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bioethics / trends*
  • Genetic Engineering / ethics
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Genetic Privacy / ethics*
  • Genetic Testing / ethics*
  • History, 20th Century
  • History, 21st Century
  • Human Genome Project
  • Humans
  • Philosophy, Medical*
  • Predictive Value of Tests