Precision Medicine and the Changing Landscape of Research Ethics

Marilyn J. Hammer, PhD, DC, RN


Oncol Nurs Forum. 2016;43(2):149-150. 

In This Article

Ethical Practice in Genetics and Genomics

In effect, the PMI is further propagating the already exponentially evolving rate of genetics and genomics research. The overarching results are anticipated to vastly change the health and well-being of humankind for the better, so that we may live more enjoyable, productive, and longer lives.

However, the path to healthier lives through the emphasis of genetics and genomics research raises new challenges on an ethical scale. The protection of human participants in research studies, including genetics and genomics investigations, is governed under the federal regulation code known as the Common Rule (National Human Genome Institute [NHGI], 2015). In general, ethical research aims to generate new knowledge to guide the implementation of new or improved interventions and treatments, as well as evaluation of those interventions and treatments, for improved health outcomes and to ensure that individuals are well informed about study participation, including risks and benefits (NHGI, 2015). In addition, the Common Rule ensures that privacy and confidentiality are maintained (Fiore & Goodman, 2015).