Should Genetic Information About Mental Health Affect Civil Court Cases?

Should Genetic Information About Mental Health Affect Civil Court Cases?

A rendering of DNA with a judge's gavel.

(© Scott Maxwell/Fotolia)


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Maya Sabatello
Maya Sabatello, LLB, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Bioethics and the co-director of the Precision Medicine: Ethics, Politics, and Culture Project at Columbia University. She is a former litigator with trans-disciplinary background and has extensive experience in national and international policy-making relating to human and disability rights. She works on the ethical, legal, and social implications of biomedical technologies, especially as used in genomics, disability, psychiatry, and human reproduction. In addition to authoring a book, Children’s Bioethics (2009), and co-editing a book, Human Rights and Disability Advocacy (2014), Sabatello has published in law, policy, medical and bioethics journals, including Genetics in Medicine, the Hastings Center Report, the Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics, and the American Journal of Bioethics. She serves on various genomic-related ethics committees, including the national IRB of the All of Us Research Program.
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The Friday Five: Soon Band-Aids Could Be AIs

In this week's Friday Five, research on a "smart" bandage for wounds, a breakthrough in fighting inflammation, the pros and cons of a new drug for Alzheimer's, benefits of the Mediterranean diet with a twist, and we've learned to recycle a plastic that was un-recyclable.

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The Friday Five covers five stories in research that you may have missed this week. There are plenty of controversies and troubling ethical issues in science – and we get into many of them in our online magazine – but this news roundup focuses on scientific creativity and progress to give you a therapeutic dose of inspiration headed into the weekend.

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Matt Fuchs

Matt Fuchs is the editor-in-chief of Leaps.org. He is also a contributing reporter to the Washington Post and has written for the New York Times, Time Magazine, WIRED and the Washington Post Magazine, among other outlets. Follow him on Twitter @fuchswriter.

Sexually Transmitted Infections are on the rise. This drug could stop them.

Cases of gonorrhea, chlamydia and syphilis soared last year, but researchers are finding that a drug known as doxy seems to reduce the number of infections.

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Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are surging across the U.S. to 2.5 million cases in 2021 according to preliminary data from the CDC. A new prevention and treatment strategy now in clinical trials may provide a way to get a handle on them.

It's easy to overlook the soaring rates of gonorrhea, chlamydia, and syphilis because most of those infections have few or no symptoms and can be identified only through testing. But left untreated, they can lead to serious damage to nerves and tissue, resulting in infertility, blindness, and dementia. Infants developing in utero are particularly vulnerable.

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Bob Roehr
Bob Roehr is a biomedical journalist based in Washington, DC. Over the last twenty-five years he has written extensively for The BMJ, Scientific American, PNAS, Proto, and myriad other publications. He is primarily interested in HIV, infectious disease, immunology, and how growing knowledge of the microbiome is changing our understanding of health and disease. He is working on a book about the ways the body can at least partially control HIV and how that has influenced (or not) the search for a treatment and cure.