Introduction'Mapping the Genomic Era: Measurements and Meanings'Social scientists, natural and biomedical scientists and policymakers will engage in debate and dialogue around current and future developments in the life sciences at the 3rd International ESRC Genomics Network Conference this week.
‘Mapping the Genomic Era: Measurements and Meanings’ will look at the varied uses DNA testing is now being put to, and ask whether the results and their consequences are clearly understood.
The meeting has been organised by the Economic and Social Research Council’s (ESRC) Cesagen centre, based at Cardiff and Lancaster Universities. Cesagen is part of the wider ESRC Genomic Network, established to examine the social and economic consequences surrounding the development and use of genomics.
Cesagen Director and conference organiser, Professor Ruth Chadwick said: “We are constantly being measured, and in various ways. Cholesterol level and waist measurement, for example, are classic indicators of health risks. But now we have entered the genomic era, we are beginning to see the increasing pervasiveness of DNA tests in our everyday life.”
But what do all these measurements mean? Are they appropriate? Or is there a danger that technology will be misused or its results misinterpreted? The conference will examine all these questions.