Philosophy & Ethics

More than half (53 percent) of U.S. consumers want to know what’s in their DNA, according to a new survey, yet only 7 percent of respondents say that their doctor has discussed genetic screening with them.

The nationwide survey, conducted by marketing research company ORC International among a representative sample of 1,020 adults, explored knowledge of and attitudes toward genetic testing among adult consumers. The strong interest in genetic screening that is evident from the survey can be attributed to a variety of factors, but may point to an interest among consumers in using genetic screening to be more proactive about their healthcare.

Now that so many teenagers have smartphones equipped with cameras it’s inevitable that they’re used to take pictures, sometimes regrettable pictures, and to share them with others. The problem is that this is not just often regrettable in their own eyes, but also illegal in the eyes of the law.

A 14-year-old boy who took a naked selfie and sent it to a girl at school that he’d been flirting with recently found himself in hot water with his school and with the police. Both his and the girl’s details have been added to a police intelligence database for making and distributing an indecent image. Indecent because, as an image of a minor, it’s classified as child pornography under the Protection of Children Act 1978.

Research undertaken on beagles and the contraceptive pill in the 1970s was found to be fabricated - there never were any beagles. Flickr/Understanding Animal Research, CC BY-SA

By Mark Israel, University of Western Australia

There are a few things you might need for an experiment involving beagles and the side effects of contraceptive pills. Animal research ethics aside, beagles might be a good start.

 Spies program at IWM London There is a dark undercurrent to Indiana's school culture, according to a recent statement, and it's created a secret smuggling web where young children acquire and trade illegal items.

The good news: The illegal items aren't marijuana or heroin.

The strange news: It's salt.
Ongoing developments in stem cell science mean that researchers often have no idea how, one year down the line, they will use specimens of human biological material.

But when a scientist takes a swab of your saliva, a sample of your blood or a piece of your skin to research a particular disease, how do you know that it’s going to be used for the intended purpose? And when it is used for research in a different condition, can you take any action? This is where informed consent comes in.

Australian guidelines for the ethical use of IVF allow selecting a child’s sex for medical reasons. But draft guidelines that are now open for public submissions raise the possibility of extending this and allowing the choice for social reasons.

Based on the furor currently engulfing the US, you might imagine that the use of fetal tissue is illegal. But in fact the collection and use of cells obtained from a human fetus following miscarriage or abortion has a long history in medical science.

For children with autism, early intervention is critical. Therapies and education – especially in the first two years of life – can facilitate a child’s social development, reduce familial stress and ultimately improve quality of life.

But while we can reliably diagnose autism spectrum disorder (ASD) at 24 months, most children are diagnosed much later.

Globalized data shows hardliners on all sides losing, and points to emergence of open-minded pro-science, pro-spiritual outlook


Keeping the Gate is the first to announce that an anonymous complaint addressed to the New York Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) has been made against famed O.J. Simpson defense attorneys Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld, who are the cofounders of the Innocence Project at Yeshiva University in Manhattan.