History Of Distrust Stymies Non-European Genetic Research
Clinical trials almost exclusively feature individuals of European ancestry, and Keolu Fox, a Ph.D. student, wants to change that. He has started a project called IndiGenomics, with the goal of collecting DNA information on indigenous people by educating and inviting them to partner with scientists on studies rather than be subjects of gene research.
‘Indigenizing Genomics,’ Or, How To Erase The European Bias In Gene Research
“So that begs the question: Who is the Human Genome Project actually for?” asks (Keolu) Fox. “Just like we have different-colored eyes and hair, we metabolize drugs differently based on the variation in our genomes. So how many of you would be shocked to learn that 95 percent of clinical trials have also exclusively featured individuals of European ancestry?” It has been difficult for scientists to recruit ethnically diverse study participants because researchers have misused data in the past. (McClurg, 6/28)
In other public health news —
Los Angeles Times:
What Germs Are Riding The Subway With You? You'll Be Surprised
What microbes are lurking in the Boston subway system? A team of scientists armed with sterile cotton swabs and a bit of soap rode the Red, Orange and Green lines of the T to find out. ... “From what we found, the bugs you encounter riding the T is not any worse than what you would expect from shaking someone’s hand,” said Curtis Huttenhower, a computational biologist at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston. “Sure, a lot of microbes are involved, but it’s nothing to worry about.” (Netburn, 6/28)