Owning Genetic Information and Gene Enhancement Techniques: Why Privacy and Property Rights May Undermine Social Control of the Human Genome

Bioethics 14 (2):97-119 (2002)
  Copy   BIBTEX


In this article I argue that the proper subjects of intangible property claims include medical records, genetic profiles, and gene enhancement techniques. Coupled with a right to privacy these intangible property rights allow individuals a zone of control that will, in most cases, justifiably exclude governmental or societal invasions into private domains. I argue that the threshold for overriding privacy rights and intangible property rights is higher, in relation to genetic enhancement techniques and sensitive personal information, than is commonly suggested. Once the bar is raised, so‐to‐speak, the burden of overriding it is formidable. Thus many policy decisions that have been recently proposed or enacted – citywide audio and video surveillance, law enforcement DNA sweeps, genetic profiling, national bans on genetic testing and enhancement of humans, to name a few – will have to be backed by very strong arguments.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,873

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Property rights in genetic information.Richard A. Spinello - 2004 - Ethics and Information Technology 6 (1):29-42.
Genetic Privacy: A Challenge to Medico-Legal Norms.Graeme Laurie - 2002 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
The Moral Significance of the Therapy-Enhancement Distinction in Human Genetics.David B. Resnik - 2000 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 9 (3):365-377.
Privacy and the human genome project.David L. Wiesenthal & Neil I. Wiener - 1996 - Ethics and Behavior 6 (3):189 – 202.
Privacy as life, liberty, property.Richard Volkman - 2003 - Ethics and Information Technology 5 (4):199-210.
Privacy Rights: Moral and Legal Foundations.Adam D. Moore - 2010 - Pennsylvania State University Press.
Genetic information, rights, and autonomy.Matti Häyry & Tuija Takala - 2001 - Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 22 (5):403-414.


Added to PP

21 (#757,947)

6 months
7 (#485,787)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Adam Moore
University of Washington

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references