News & AnalysisClinical Research

Divulging DNA Secrets of Dead Stirs Debate

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Science  24 Jan 2014:
Vol. 343, Issue 6169, pp. 356-357
DOI: 10.1126/science.343.6169.356

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As gene sequencing advances, more and more research studies turn up gene mutations that can impact health in study volunteers. If the volunteer dies, what to do with DNA findings that may impact their survivors? Increasingly, scientists and others are struggling with the ethics, legalities, and practicalities of whether and how to share this information with family members of the deceased, who may be affected, too.