Science News reports of an innovative new way that researchers are using medical records for genetics research. Obviously, patients’ medical records, in aggregate, contain a treasure trove of useful data to researchers seeking patterns that can be used in the study of genetics and disease. However as you’re fully aware, privacy is of eminent concern when it comes to patient records. According to the Science News article, “Databases that link thousands of people’s DNA profiles to their medical histories are a powerful tool for researchers who want to use genetics to individualize the diagnosis and treatment of disease. But this promise of personalized medicine comes with concerns about patient privacy. Now scientists have come up with a way to alter personal medical information so it’s still meaningful for research, but meaningless to someone trying to ID an individual in a database.” To learn how they rendered anonymous the information contained in medical records read the entire article here courtesy of Wired Magazine.
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