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BMC Med Genomics. 2017 Feb 21;10(1):9. doi: 10.1186/s12920-017-0247-4.

Genomic newborn screening: public health policy considerations and recommendations.

Author information

1
Department of Medical Genetics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada. jan.friedman@ubc.ca.
2
Child & Family Research Institute, Vancouver, Canada. jan.friedman@ubc.ca.
3
Section Clinical Genetics, Department of Clinical Genetics, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, Holland.
4
EMGO Institute for Health and Care Research, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, Holland.
5
The Center for Genetic Research Ethics and Law, Department of Bioethics, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH, USA.
6
Office of Population Health Genomics, Public Health Division, Department of Health, Government of Western Australia, Perth, Australia.
7
Centre of Genomics and Policy, Department of Human Genetics, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.
8
Centre for Biomedical Ethics and Law, Department of Public Health and Primary Care, KU Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The use of genome-wide (whole genome or exome) sequencing for population-based newborn screening presents an opportunity to detect and treat or prevent many more serious early-onset health conditions than is possible today.

METHODS:

The Paediatric Task Team of the Global Alliance for Genomics and Health's Regulatory and Ethics Working Group reviewed current understanding and concerns regarding the use of genomic technologies for population-based newborn screening and developed, by consensus, eight recommendations for clinicians, clinical laboratory scientists, and policy makers.

RESULTS:

Before genome-wide sequencing can be implemented in newborn screening programs, its clinical utility and cost-effectiveness must be demonstrated, and the ability to distinguish disease-causing and benign variants of all genes screened must be established. In addition, each jurisdiction needs to resolve ethical and policy issues regarding the disclosure of incidental or secondary findings to families and ownership, appropriate storage and sharing of genomic data.

CONCLUSION:

The best interests of children should be the basis for all decisions regarding the implementation of genomic newborn screening.

KEYWORDS:

Ethics; Exome Sequencing; Newborn Screening; Public Health Genetics; Public Policy; Whole Genome Sequencing

PMID:
28222731
PMCID:
PMC5320805
DOI:
10.1186/s12920-017-0247-4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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