A Peek Into Baby's Genes

Avatar for cmkristy
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2005
A Peek Into Baby's Genes
Mon, 10-07-2013 - 3:05pm

Little Amelia Sloan is a pioneer: Shortly after her birth, scientists took drops of the healthy baby's blood to map her genetic code. 

Amelia is part of a large research project outside the nation's capital that is decoding the DNA of hundreds of infants. New parents in a few other cities soon can start signing up for smaller studies to explore if what's called genome sequencing — fully mapping someone's genes to look for health risks — should become a part of newborn care. 

It's full of ethical challenges. 

Should parents be told only about childhood threats? Or would they also want to learn if their babies carried a key gene for, say, breast cancer after they're grown? Could knowing about future risks alter how a family treats an otherwise healthy youngster? And how accurate is this technology — could it raise too many false alarms? 


Wow!  Would you give this a try if the opportunity came your way?  Would you want to know what the future holdsfor your baby?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2013
Tue, 10-08-2013 - 8:57am
Oh boy. I'm not sure I'd want to know. It just seems like it would be borrowing trouble, so to speak. If you knew what was coming, could you ever fully embrace and enjoy life?