Points to Consider: Ethical, Legal, and Psychosocial Implications of Genetic Testing in Children and Adolescents

Am J Hum Genet. 2015 Jul 2;97(1):6-21. doi: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2015.05.022.


In 1995, the American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) and American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics (ACMG) jointly published a statement on genetic testing in children and adolescents. In the past 20 years, much has changed in the field of genetics, including the development of powerful new technologies, new data from genetic research on children and adolescents, and substantial clinical experience. This statement represents current opinion by the ASHG on the ethical, legal, and social issues concerning genetic testing in children. These recommendations are relevant to families, clinicians, and investigators. After a brief review of the 1995 statement and major changes in genetic technologies in recent years, this statement offers points to consider on a broad range of test technologies and their applications in clinical medicine and research. Recommendations are also made for record and communication issues in this domain and for professional education.

Publication types

  • Historical Article
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Genetic Carrier Screening
  • Genetic Testing / ethics*
  • Genetic Testing / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Genetic Testing / trends*
  • Genetics / history*
  • Genomics / ethics
  • Genomics / methods*
  • History, 20th Century
  • History, 21st Century
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Informed Consent By Minors / psychology*
  • Microarray Analysis / methods
  • Microarray Analysis / trends
  • Pharmacogenetics / methods