The individual and genomics
Ageing genomics affects individual decision-making, self-management and empowerment. In the future, it may become possible for individuals to base their life-style choices on personalised genomics bioinformation. But there are many questions. Will, for instance, people be able to understand and process this type of information? How should personalized genomics information be translated in behavioral adaptations? Should individuals be willing to adapt? Can we expect them to manage their own longevity?
Society and genomics
Ageing genomics also has an impact on decision-making processes by society at large. The claim is often made that this type of research will be beneficial to society. However, until now the increase in longevity has not been accompanied by an increase of disease-free life. In fact, the period in which people suffer from chronic diseases has grown longer, especially in women. What does this mean from a socio-economic point of view? Moreover, genomics research on ageing is expected to provide health care workers, governmental bodies, insurance companies and employers with new insights into the relation between genomes, life-style and health. What tools and options for management and governance does this entail? Are they to be used, and how? Preventive medicine generates new responsibility for the health care sector and for governance.
Researchers in the consortium are also contributing to the discussion about the opportunities and pitfalls of genomics research in the media and in public debates and interviews.
This volume focuses on the ethical and philosophical issues that arise in an aging society, and the implications of these issues for healthcare and social policy.
The editors, Professor Maartje Schermer (MD PhD) and Wim Pinxten (PhD), collaborated with NCHA in the project 'Ageing: personalised genomics, empowerment, identity and medicalization'
Interviews about research projects