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Laws 2015, 4(3), 377-412;

Privacy, Personhood, and Property in the Age of Genomics

School of Law, Faculty of Business Government and Law, University of Canberra, Canberra 2601, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 May 2015 / Revised: 19 July 2015 / Accepted: 24 July 2015 / Published: 30 July 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Bioethics, Law and Human Rights: Global Intersections)
PDF [284 KB, uploaded 30 July 2015]


Revolutions in genetic technology have heralded the age of population-scale genomic metadata. This article analyzes the tensions and gaps between traditional conceptions of personhood and international legal responses to a person’s right over disembodied data obtained from his/her body. The opportunities for breakthroughs in healthcare by interrogating population-scale genomic databases are accompanied by questions about privacy, property, dignity, and the nature of information regulation in a global economy. This article highlights instances where law and policy makers have grappled with these challenges, and foreshadows some emerging future challenges. It also highlights differences between jurisdictions, and calls for greater global participation in the development of a coherent framework, rather than continued reliance on a small number of stakeholders, to develop that framework.
Keywords: genomic; privacy; bioethics; law genomic; privacy; bioethics; law
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Bonython, W.; Arnold, B.B. Privacy, Personhood, and Property in the Age of Genomics. Laws 2015, 4, 377-412.

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