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UC Berkeley Backs Off Genetic Testing Of Students

Publication Date: 
August 12, 2010
Laura Anthony

Professor Hank Greely talks to ABC News about ethical issues and privacy concerns surrounding a genetic testing program for incoming students at UC Berkeley. Laura Ashely reports:

A controversial DNA testing program at UC Berkeley will be modified after state health officials ruled the UC's plan to give students their individual test results is a violation of state law.

UC Berkeley genetic researchers say a ruling from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) could have a chilling effect on biomedical research now that they have been ordered not to release individual DNA results to hundreds of incoming students.


"The biggest concern is that when people get genetic information they often will misunderstand it," Hank Greely of Stanford Law School said. "If someone gets a piece of information about their genes without a good chance to have it explained to them by an expert, they may misinterpret it in ways that hurt them."