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Researcher extracts DNA from a test tube using a micropipette.

Genetic Testing Kits: Fueling a Historical Discrimination Bias?
The diversity of snowflakes is a great analogy to that of the human genome. Our DNA is an exclusive genetic fingerprint that only one individual on the planet has. The particular DNA sequence found within each gene controls an individual’s physical traits, the predisposition for disease, and chemical messages throughout the body.

Learning about hereditary imprint has never been easier. Direct-to-consumer genetic tests investigate ancestry (Ancestry.com and others) and predisposition for disease (23andMe). The fast unfolding of hereditary technology unlocks deeper questions about our genetic makeup, but the quest can fuel discrimination bias. Scientific discovery has the bold ability to benefit the future of health and wellness, but it can also reinforce hierarchies of race, sex, and physical ability.

It’s Been Done Before
There is danger in defining certain conditions to be diseases based on racial and ethnic lines. The general consensus among the majority of scientific and social researchers is there is no biological basis for race. Yet this concept is reinforced repeatedly through genetic research. Studies examining health disparities based...

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