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Blood Samples Raise Questions of Privacy

Posted By admin On June 30, 2009 @ 12:33 pm In Old Infowars Posts Style,Science & Technology | Comments Disabled

Rob Stein
The Washington Post
June 30, 2009

[efoods]Matthew Brzica and his wife hardly noticed when the hospital took a few drops of blood from each of their four newborn children for routine genetic testing. But then they discovered that the state had kept the dried blood samples ever since — and was making them available to scientists for medical research.

“They’re just taking DNA from young kids right out of the womb and putting it into a warehouse,” said Brzica, of Victoria, Minn. “DNA is what makes us who we are. It’s just not right.”

The couple is among a group of parents challenging Minnesota’s practice of storing babies’ blood samples and allowing researchers to study them without their permission. The confrontation, and a similar one in Texas, has focused attention on the practice at a time when there is increasing interest in using millions of these collected “blood spots” to study diseases.

Michigan, for example, is moving millions of samples from a state warehouse in Lansing to freezers in a new “neonatal biobank” in Detroit in the hopes of helping make the economically downtrodden city a center for biomedical research. The National Institutes of Health, meanwhile, is funding a $13.5 million, five-year project aimed at creating a “virtual repository” of blood samples from around the country.

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