GENE201 Excelsior Ethical Issues Associated with Genetic Genealogy Questions

In this activity, you will apply your understanding of ethical concerns to evaluate test results.

Read the following scenario and, based on your understanding of genetic genealogy issues and the Genetic Genealogy Standards (Links to an external site.) , write a paper responding to the questions presented below. Be sure to cite appropriate sections of the Genetic Genealogy Standards and any other sources (including the ISOGG wiki, the Shared cM Project, or any other resource), using Evidence Explained formatting.

Select the following link to read the case study: Unexpected Results Case Study [PDF file size 269 KB]

After reading the scenario, answer the following questions.

Part I:Based on the atDNA and Y-DNA test results, what is Stephen’s relationship to Joan, Xavier, and Philip? What is Philip’s relationship to Joan and Xavier, and what does that reveal about Seth’s relationship to Joan, Xavier, and Stephen? What is the support for these conclusions? What other DNA testing, if any, would help further elucidate these relationships?

Part II:Can and/or should Xavier tell his uncle about the test results? Can and/or should Xavier tell his mother Joan about the test results? If so, how should he go about telling his uncle and/or mother? What are the risks if Xavier decides not to tell his uncle or mother about the test results? Without having a new discussion with Stephen, how much information can Xavier provide to Greg about Stephen?

Part III:Assume that Xavier sits down with Stephen and shares the test results with him, including the match to Adopted_Gregory_1956. Stephen laughs it all off, and says that he is not at all interested in contacting or sharing information with Adopted_Gregory_1956. Soon after the conversation, Greg contacts Xavier and says that he is suffering from some sort of genetic illness that the doctors are unable to identify, and he is trying to find his family to help his plight. He pleads with Xavier to share information about Stephen. Should Xavier share information about Stephen with Greg despite Stephen’s instructions? Explain your rationale in detail.

Reference:The Genetic Genealogy Standards Committee, The Genetic Genealogy Standards, (Links to an external site.) (2015).


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