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Genetic Crossroads
September 18th, 2008

Here are some additional recent posts from CGS's blog, Biopolitical Times. We invite you to add Biopolitical Times to your Internet routines or RSS reader, and to weigh in with your own comments.

The spitterati and trickle-down genomics
23andMe's use of celebrities and glitzy parties to promote its direct-to-consumer DNA tests has deflected attention from the concerns and criticisms of physicians, bioethicists, and regulators.

Watch for Falling Prices
by Osagie Obasogie
Google-backed startup 23andMe has slashed prices for its genome scanning service in what appears to be an attempt to boost sales of a luxury item in the midst of an economic downturn.

National Academies Revise Stem Cell Research Guidelines
by Jesse Reynolds
The National Academies' Guidelines for Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research have just been revised. There are changes in two key areas, one encouraging, and one less so.

Enhancement: Of breasts and bottom lines
by Marcy Darnovsky
Allergan, the maker of breast implants (and Botox), is busy trying to portray them as "sources of power, freedom, individuality and self-confidence."

India in the News
by Jesse Reynolds
In the last couple weeks, India's booming fertility industry has been in the news frequently. Its surrogacy business has grown to a half billion dollars a year, payments for eggs are being scrutinized, and activists have petitioned the Supreme Court to stop major internet sites from running ads for sex selection.

Eggs on ice: New profit center for the baby business
by Marcy Darnovsky
Egg freezing is still experimental, but some in the assisted reproduction industry are pushing it hard as a way to "extend fertility."

Politicized Prognostication on Pluripotency and Patent Portfolios
by Jesse Reynolds
Initial reactions to alternatives to embryos have been all too predictably polarized. I don't pay too much attention to them. But why the drastic turn in rhetoric from Robert Lanza of ACT?

Girl babies, boy babies, gender expectations
by Marcy Darnovsky
"Parents who put a great deal of store in expectations about gender may turn out to be disappointed."

How turn a gene for this into one for that (and try to make money in the process)
by Jesse Reynolds
A small firm that sells DNA tests for the "ruthlessness gene" has created a new target market, offering what it portrays as "the first genetic screen for marital success."


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