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WIDER USE OF GENOMICS

UPSC CURRENT AFFAIRS | PUSH FOR WIDER USE OF GENOMICS IN ALL COUNTRIES: WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION (WHO) | 15TH JULY | WHO

SYLLABUS SECTION:

WHY IN THE NEWS?

Recently, WHO’s Science Council issued its first report on accelerating access to wider use of genomics for global health,

Arguing that it is not justifiable ethically or scientifically for less-resourced countries to gain access to such technologies long after rich countries do.

RECOMMENDATIONS WIDER USE OF GENOMICS:

To promote the adoption or expanded use of genomics, the report’s recommendations address four themes:

Advocacy, implementation, collaboration, and associated ethical, legal and social issues:

  • Advocacy for genomics is needed to persuade governments, as well as commercial and non-commercial organizations, academic institutions,
  • And others, of the medical, scientific, and economic benefits of genomic technologies.
  • Overcoming obstacles to implementation will require local planning, financing, expanded training of essential personnel, and the low-cost provision of instruments, materials, and computational infrastructure.
  • Government ministries, funding agencies, and scientific organizations in academia and industry should collaborate to establish plans on how to use genomics and build and expand technical capacity. They should also look to pool resources through regional programs if appropriate.
  • Effective oversight – coupled with national and international rules and standards – is key to promoting ethical, legal, equitable use and responsible sharing of information obtained with genomic methods.

What is genomics?

  • Genomics refers to the study of the entire genome of organisms and the large amounts of corresponding data generated from it.
  • Genetics, on the other hand, is concerned with study of heredity.
Applications and it’s wider uses of genomics:
  • Human genomics for medical purposes
  • Microbial genomics for medical purpose
  • Biological and medical research

SOURCE: WHO

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