Epigenetics has the potential to revolutionize diagnosis and treatment in psychiatry, especially child psychiatry, as it may offer the opportunity for early detection and prevention, as well as development of new treatments. As with the previous introduction of genetic research in psychiatry, there is also the problem of unrealistic expectations and new legal and ethical problems. This article reviews the potential contributions and problems of epigenetic research in child psychiatry. Previous legal and ethical issues in genetic research serve as a guide to those in epigenetic research.
The Catholic Church proscribes methods of birth control other than sexual abstinence. Although the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recognizes abstinence as an acceptable method of birth control in research studies, some pharmaceutical companies mandate the use of artificial contraceptive techniques to avoid pregnancy as a condition for participation in their studies. These requirements are unacceptable at Catholic health care institutions, leading to conflicts among institutional review boards, clinical investigators, and sponsors.
Annals (Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada)
With increasing economic, political, and bureaucratic involvement in research, there is little focus on the medical researcher's idealistic and benevolent intentions. Benevolence is a pillar of ethical human-subjects research, and altruism is a form of benevolence that is difficult to quantify. It is interest in the welfare of others without personal benefit. This article examines the extent of altruism in medical research from philosophical, psychological, and practical points of view.
The American Journal of Occupational Therapy: Official Publication of the American Occupational Therapy Association
Occupational therapy is based on core values of altruism, equality, and honoring the dignity of others. Embedded in these values is the ever-present negotiation of power. To honor the concern for the welfare of others, researchers are challenged to think about issues of power throughout the research process. This paper identifies dilemmas and raises questions researchers might ask themselves as they struggle to share power in the interpretive research process.
HIV treatment for participants who become infected during HIV vaccine trials has been the focus of ethical controversy. The obligations of sponsors to ensure that participants have access to antiretrovirals have been a particular focus of this debate. This paper presents three arguments that have been made in this regard, and some of their limitations, in anticipation of HIV vaccine trials in South Africa.
BACKGROUND: This project was conducted to investigate whether the concerns that researchers have about including terminally ill patients in research were shared by a sample of terminally ill patients. METHODS: Twenty-two patients admitted to a hospice participated in semistructured interviews; 18 patients had advanced malignant disease and 13 were women; their ages ranged from 28 to 93 years. The interview transcripts were analysed for common themes and particular attention was paid to the reasons patients gave for their views. RESULTS: All the patients wanted to participate in research.
Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Concern about the ethics of clinical drug trials research on patients and healthy volunteers has been the subject of significant ethical analysis and policy development--protocols are reviewed by Research Ethics Committees and subjects are protected by informed consent procedures. More recently attention has begun to be focused on DNA banking for clinical and pharmacogenetics research.
This paper examines the nature of the harm-benefit tradeoff in early clinical research for interventions that involve remote possibility of direct benefit and likelihood of direct harms to research participants with fatal prognoses, by drawing on the example of gene transfer trials for glioblastoma multiforme. We argue that the appeal made by the component approach to clinical equipoise fails to account fully for the nature of the harm-benefit tradeoff-individual harm for social benefit-that would be required to justify such research.
OBJECTIVE: Research that seeks to enroll noncompetent patients with Alzheimer's disease without presenting any potential benefit to participants is the source of substantial ethical controversy. The authors used hypothetical Alzheimer's disease studies that included either a blood draw or a blood draw and lumbar puncture to explore older persons' attitudes on this question. METHOD: Face-to-face interviews were conducted with 538 persons age 65 and older.