Race, Genetics, and Disease: Questions of Evidence, Matters of Consequence

- Social Studies of Science
Author/s: -Fujimura, Joan H -Duster, Troy -Rajagopalan, Ramya
Journal: Social Studies of Science
Year: 2008
Volume: 38
Issue: 5
Pages: 643
Start Page: 643

This special issue of Studies of Science highlights ongoing debates concerning race, genomics, and disease. Some of the papers examine the production of disease etiology research, pharmaceutical drug response, or DNA genealogy tests, while others analyze institutional consequences and challenges arising from contemporary biomedicine, such as medical education and recruiting subjects for clinical research. In this introduction, we outline major issues that provide background and foreground for the specific studies that follow, and end with a brief description of the papers. First, we briefly outline the debates around contemporary genetics research on race, ancestry, population, and disease. Second, we describe genomics and disease research projects on the genetics of populations that provide the ground on which the past debates have played, as well as introduce very recent projects that may change the tenor of future debates. We discuss why some scientists argue that their research does not biologize race, while others argue that their findings do demonstrate racial differences. Finally, we relate these complex genomic sciences and their biopolitical debates to relevant STS themes.

URL: http://sss.sagepub.com/content/38/5/643.abstract