Non invasive prenatal genetic diagnosis and eugenic aims. A bioethical reflection

Maria Luisa Di Pietro, Fj Gonzaes Meldo

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista


The use of techniques of analysis of fetal nucleic acid present in maternal peripheral blood for noninvasive prenatal genetic diagnosis (NIPD) is a reality in clinical practice in the case of certain diseases. In the coming years, it will become part of routine prenatal screening and diagnostic techniques for fetal diagnosis. A bioethical reflection on the possible difficulties and problems of the use of these techniques is necessary. The widespread use of NIPD could decrease the autonomy of women in the decision-making process. Health authorities could use NIPD as a means of eugenic prevention of genetic diseases, for example, in Down syndrome cases. At the same time, these techniques will result in reduced costs of screening, an increase in the number of disabled fetuses detected, and a decrease in the number of indirect abortions caused by invasive techniques. NIPD could increase the image of the disabled person as an individual that has to be excluded from society and, for this reason, physicians play an important role in the process of pre-diagnosis and post-diagnosis genetic counseling.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)282-303
Numero di pagine22
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2012


  • ethics
  • prenatal diagnosis


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