Editors’Note: August 4, 2017
Legitimateobjections have been raised about the independence and integrity of thecommentaries that Henry Miller has written for Project Syndicate and other outlets, inparticular that Monsanto, rather than Miller, drafted some of them. Readersshould be aware of this potential conflict of interest, which, had it beenknown at the time Miller’s commentaries were accepted, would have constitutedgrounds for rejecting them.
PALO ALTO – Race can undoubtedly be a tricky subject, with any suggestion of genetic differences among racial groups – beyond superficial characteristics like skin color – potentially invoking memories of the nineteenth-century eugenics movement and its eventual role in Nazi ideology. Now, with drug companies increasingly seeking to develop medications that target particular racial groups, the long-taboo subject of racial genetics has reemerged.
Much of the current debate centers on whether race should be a criterion for inclusion in clinical trials – and, by extension, whether drug labeling should mention race specifically. Although the issues are complicated, the solution is simple: follow the data.