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The Interrelationships and Implications of Genetic Discoveries Report

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Fredericks, Odiet, Miller and Fredericks, (2004). Toward an understanding of genetic sociology and its relationships to medical sociology and medical genetics in the educational enterprise. Education, 125, 222–236 provides an overview on the need for genetic sociology within the discipline of Medical Sociology. The purpose of the article is to clearly and succinctly demonstrate the need for the new sub-discipline to analyze the interrelationships and implications of genetic discoveries, diagnoses, treatments and prognoses upon societal behavior (p.1). In addition to this, the new sub-discipline comes with the ability to illuminate controversial topics within the field of medical sociology such as stem cell research and analysis of the interrelationships in human embryo and our society, DNA tests in the courts of law, religion and human genome and the broad topic of genetic discoveries and their impact in the society.

The authors assert a number off advantages that will arise as a result of the creation of the new discipline and proceed to demonstrate these advantages within this article. The discusses “how the sub-discipline of Genetic Sociology can play a role in the educational enterprise; by bringing together the natural and social sciences using prenatal genetic testing and stem cell research as examples” (p.8).This will definitely improve research undertakings in genetic sociology with regard to the above mentioned research topics.

Individuals within the disciple of medical sociology and informed members of the society with agree to the fact that a sub-discipline within this field is urgently needed. The most obvious reason behind creating a new sub-discipline within a broad area of study is always based on the inability of a program to adequately address its numerous sub-sections. In recognizing the fact that past and current research literature have linked genetic disorders to societal behaviors and that these behaviors derive their roots from the institutions we have come through such as family and education, the new discipline will address and integrate this research report with other broad areas of study.

In putting more weight to the fact this disciple in indeed necessary, I do agree with Fredericks, et al (2004) in stating that “This new sub-discipline in Medical Sociology will allow scholars to further identify and integrate additional areas of prenatal genetic testing and selective abortion, stem cell research and human cloning, gene therapy, genetic privacy and discrimination, and the implications of the human genome project in medical genetics”. It is with appreciating that these areas of study are best and adequately addressed when this new sub-discipline is created.

This article has demonstrated a number of impacts in recognizing genetic sociology as a new sub-discipline of medical sociology. First, this will definitely raise the levels of innovative technology in the field of stem cell research. Issues that deal will the privacy of the DNA will be adequately addressed. In addition to the above, prenatal genetic testing and selective abortion for risks of inheritable X-linked diseases aimed at treating genetic disorders prior to birth will be explored and more research efforts exerted on it. “Recent research explores in utero-therapy aimed at treating the genetic disease prior to birth in order to diminish the effects of the disease (e.g. congenital adrenal hyperplasia and phenylketonuria)” (Such will constitute the impacts of recognizing genetic sociology as sub-discipline of medical sociology. Lastly, “genetic sociology will study the ramifications of genetic testing on society, culture and personality of individuals”. (p. 8).this will impact greatly on both legal and ethical aspects of genetic testing on our culture and increased debate on genetic testing as a controversial topic in our society

Reference

Fredericks, M., Odiet, J. A., Miller, S. I., Fredericks, J. (2004). Toward an understanding of genetic sociology and its relationships to medical sociology and medical genetics in the educational enterprise. Education, 125, 222–236

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