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The Research Team

Principal Investigators

Ruth Chadwick is Professor of Bioethics at Lancaster University and Director of CESAGen. She is Chair of the Human Genome Organisation (HUGO) Ethics Committee and a member of the Advisory Council on Novel Foods and Processes and of the Medical Research Council Advisory Steering Committee on DNA Banking. She is interested in the development of ethical and governance frameworks for population databases and the adequacy of traditional principles to meet the new challenges raised by such initiatives, in the light of the negotiation between the individualisation of what they promise and the collective action they require.

Mairi Levitt is a sociologist working on empirical bioethics and public engagement in the field of genetics. She is interested in the processes of public consultation in the setting up and running of databases, public perceptions, the role of ethics and media coverage.

Paul Fearnhead works in statistical and population genetics and is interested in how the evolutionary processes, such as mutation, drift, recombination and selection, affect patterns of human genetic diversity. Understanding these patterns is of central importance to designing accurate methods for, and interpreting results of, association studies for complex diseases.

Research Associate

Minakshi Bhardwaj has a background in biological sciences and has a specific interest in bioethics and international governance of biotechnology. Having worked in the area of international governance, her particular interest in databases lies in comparative studies of different governance frameworks and harmonisation of regulatory mechanisms and exploring underlying common ethical principles across cultures. Mina is also interested in the scientific challenges of biobanks, genetic differences between and among populations (if any) and statistical validity of databases.


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Page updated: 9 November, 2005