UCSC.edu | Jennifer McNulty | May 3, 2019

Jenny Reardon, a leading voice in the field of genomics, was one of 15 participants invited to attend a workshop on personalized medicine hosted by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.

The workshop, “The Revolution of Personalized Medicine: Are We Going to Cure All Diseases and at What Price?,” took place April 8-9 in Vatican City. With an emphasis on the bioethical complexity of genomics, as well as the technological challenges, the workshop brought together leading minds from around the world to assess this new era in medicine.

Among the attendees were pioneers of the field of genomics, including Eric Lander, a principal leader of the Human Genome Project and president of the Broad Institute; Christopher Austin, director of the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences; leaders in medical ethics, including Joseph Fins, chief of the Division of Medical Ethics at Weill Cornell Medical College, and Nobel Laureate Aaron Ciechanover.

Reardon is the author of the 2017 book The Post Genomic Condition: Ethics, Justice, and Knowledge After the Genomeand Race to the Finish: Identity and Governance in an Age of Genomics. The founding director of the Science and Justice Research Center at UC Santa Cruz, Reardon brings questions about identity, justice, and democracy to her scrutiny of genomics and the promise of personalized medicine. In 2018, Reardon coauthored an open letter signed by 67 scholars responding to Harvard University’s David Reich’s op-ed in the New York Times about genetics and race.

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