Speaking of genetic testing…

Senate Passes Bill to Ban Genetic Discrimination

(side note: fear of discrimination is the reason my madre has not been tested for genetic abnormalities)

The promise of an era of personalized medicine based on genetic testing long has been haunted by a disturbing possibility: The same data that could alert people to serious medical problems might be used to deny them jobs or insurance.

But Thursday the Senate voted 95-0 to outlaw such discrimination, with the House expected to add its approval quickly.

The bill, which President Bush has agreed to sign, does more than protect those who undergo genetic testing: It marks a significant milestone in the effort to develop a 21st- century architecture of laws to govern the changes sweeping science and medicine.

“It’s the first civil-rights bill of the new century of life sciences,” Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., said. “We made sure today that our laws reflect the (scientific) advances we are making.”

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