Policy ForumGenetics

FDA Races in Wrong Direction

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Science  25 Jul 2003:
Vol. 301, Issue 5632, pp. 466
DOI: 10.1126/science.1087004

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Summary

Despite recent genetic evidence and the promise of individualized medicine, there is a continuing interest in using self-identified categories of race and ethnicity as variables in scientific and medical research. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently proposed a standardized approach for the collection of race and ethnicity data in clinical trials. We believe that this move fails to acknowledge new scientific data and recommend that relevant data from individuals be collected and used rather than broad group statistics. We also encourage that increased funding be committed to this important issue.