12 June 2015

Genetic Databases

'Legal Protection and Ethical Management of Genetic Databases: Challenges of the European Process of Harmonization' (Jean Monnet Working Paper 19/08) by Lucia Scaffardi comments
The issue of DNA database legislation is one of the most delicate challenges of legislative harmonization at the European level. The balance between the right to privacy, and the right to security and to fair trial is hard to be achieved and it depends a lot from the cultural, historical, philosophical and even religious background each country is characterised by. At present solutions widely differ in Europe. 
The paper seeks to analyse the most important national legislations concerning the use of genetic profiling, underlining on the one hand the effective norms which characterise the most important and innovative national laws and regulations, and, on the other, the implications of those laws and regulations undermining the protection and enforcement of fundamental rights. We will then discuss the European milestones and the process that led to the adoption of the Treaty of PrĂ¼m, from both a political and a legal perspective. Finally, the paper will try to assess the process of harmonization, its challenges, the necessary mediations, and above all its relevant ethical, social, economic as well as legal implications.