2010 Webinar: Genetic Research

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Genetic Research: Benefits, Risks and Ethical Issues, was a webinar held on Tuesday, October 26, 2010. The webinar provided an overview of the core ethical issues currently faced by scientists engaged in all areas of genetic research. This webinar:

  • Explored complex ethical questions related to informed consent for genetic research, including the disclosure of test results
  • Discussed what investigators should do with incidental findings/variants of unknown significance
  • Reviewed the issues to consider when engaging family members in research studies
  • Offered strategies for subject recruitment and drafting of informed consent documents for genetics research protocol
  • Explored the appropriate use of identified, archived specimens, for current and future research


The audience for this webinar included all those interested in the review and oversight of genetics research.


Ingrid Holm, MD, MPH
Ingrid Holm is the director of the phenotype core of the program in genomics at Children’s Hospital Boston and an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. She received her MD from the University of California, Los Angeles, and then completed an internship and residency in pediatrics, and post-graduate fellowships in genetics and pediatric endocrinology, at Children's Hospital Boston. In 2003 she completed the Harvard Pediatric Health Services Research Fellowship, and received her MPH in Clinical Effectiveness at the Harvard School of Public Health.

As co-investigator on a large international study of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), Dr. Holm is overseeing the genetic aspects of SIDS, and is pursuing her own related research project to understand the genetic aspects of sudden unexplained death in childhood (SUDC). She also is a co-investigator with Drs. Louis Kunkel and Isaac Kohane in studies of the genetics of autism. Dr. Holm is a member of Children’s Hospital Boston Institutional Review Board (IRB), and chair of the executive biorepository committee at Children's Hospital Boston.

Lisa Lehmann, MD, PhD, MSc
Lisa Lehmann is director of the Center for Bioethics at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, assistant professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Associate Physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She received her BA from Cornell University where she studied philosophy and was a College Scholar. She attended Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and completed her training in internal medicine at Johns Hopkins Hospital. She received her PhD in philosophy from Johns Hopkins University and MSc in clinical epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Her research is focused on empirical and philosophical analysis of contemporary ethical issues in medicine. She is interested in the moral determinants of medical decision-making and has focused on ethical issues in genetics, truth telling in medicine, religion and medicine, and research ethics. In addition to practicing internal medicine she is an active member of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital clinical ethics consultation service and ethics committee, chair of the Framingham Heart Study Ethics Advisory Board, and a consultant for the Harvard Catalyst research ethics service.