Neuro-epigenethics: ethical and legal issues in epigenetic testing
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Epigenetic technologies that allow us to determine smoking and drinking behaviors have the potential to shift the frame of reference with which we judge ourselves and others. This session on the ethical use of epigenetic technology will examine how knowledge of health behaviors may impact self-perception and autonomy of individuals who undergo this testing. Shaming and blaming may be an undesirable and unanticipated event which should be carefully assessed through the lens of historical knowledge of other social phenomena. The resulting pressure on lifestyle choices may create an incursion on the autonomous right of self-determination. This session will examine these issues from an ethical and humanistic perspective as a balance to the technological imperative. Concurrently, the increase in employer and insurer interest in risk-reduction and cost-shifting has led to major enthusiasm for health and wellness plans including data collection and sale. The patchwork of legal regulations will be discussed.
Tuesday, November 13, 2018; noon to 1 p.m.; Room D1.602. "Ethical and Legal Issues in Epigenetic Testing for Alcohol, Tobacco and Cannabis Use". Cheryl J. Erwin, J.D., Ph.D.; McCrary/McGovern Chair of Ethics and Humanities; Professor, Departments of Medical Education and Psychiatry; Director, Center for Ethics, Humanities & Spirituality; Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, School of Medicine.
Substance Abuse Detection