Defining and managing incidental findings in genetic and genomic practice

Our review explored questions about the management and disclosure of incidental genomic findings—those discovered through whole-genome approaches, but unrelated to the question that was asked. We have discussed the various terms used for such findings; factors that determine disclosure; differences in clinical, research and commercial settings; and ethical/practical issues about familial implications and re-contacting testees. Our recommendations include that greater international consensus is developed around disclosure and management; findings are referred to in appropriately different ways according to context; clear consent processes are used, but the absence of consent should not always preclude disclosure; and ways to use the genome output as a resource, accessible over time, are identified, particularly to facilitate disclosure and re-contact when previously unclear findings are clarified. (By Dr Sandi Dheensa, http://jmg.bmj.com/content/early/2014/09/16/jmedgenet-2014-102435 )

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