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    Telegraph (UK): Privacy fears over DNA database for up to 100,000 patients

    The Telegraph reports on privacy questions about a new DNA database in the United Kingdom:

    The UK will be the first country to introduce high-tech DNA mapping within a mainstream health system in a move designed to help it lead the world in tackling cancer and rare diseases, Downing Street said.

    But campaigners warned the project, in which patients will have to opt out of having their personal DNA code sequenced if they do not wish to be involved, comes with “very real privacy concerns”.

    If extended to the whole population, individuals and their relatives could be identified and tracked by matching their DNA to their genome stored in healthcare records in a move which could “wipe out privacy”, GeneWatch UK said. […]

    But up to 100,000 patients over three to five years will now have their personal DNA code sequenced, anonymised and stored to increase doctors’ understanding of their genetic make-up, condition and treatment needs, and help develop potentially life-saving new drugs.

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