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Genomics and Universal Healthcare

If the US enters the genomics-based medicine age without universal healthcare, Jeremy Grushcow at The Cross-Border Biotech Blog says that "it will exacerbate existing inequalities and create new ones we haven't even imagined." As an example, Grushcow draws on new guidance from the UK's General Medical Council that says if a patient is found to have a genetic disease, then doctors must inform relatives of their risk. Grushcow says that such notification is only possible with universal coverage. "People with genetic diseases can be informed of their risk because they won't lose their insurance or be forced into a high-risk high-cost pool as a result," he writes.

The Scan

Study Finds Few FDA Post-Market Regulatory Actions Backed by Research, Public Assessments

A Yale University-led team examines in The BMJ safety signals from the US FDA Adverse Event Reporting System and whether they led to regulatory action.

Duke University Team Develops Programmable RNA Tool for Cell Editing

Researchers have developed an RNA-based editing tool that can target specific cells, as they describe in Nature.

Novel Gene Editing Approach for Treating Cystic Fibrosis

Researchers in Science Advances report on their development of a non-nuclease-based gene editing approach they hope to apply to treat cystic fibrosis.

Study Tracks Responses in Patients Pursuing Polygenic Risk Score Profiling

Using interviews, researchers in the European Journal of Human Genetics qualitatively assess individuals' motivations for, and experiences with, direct-to-consumer polygenic risk score testing.