Bringing science and development together through news and analysis

  • Tribe blasts 'exploitation' of blood samples

Controversy has erupted over the use of blood samples — originally collected for a study into rheumatoid arthritis — for other research without consulting the people who donated the samples nearly 20 years ago.

A group of Canadian Amerindians on Vancouver Island who donated the blood are incensed that their blood has been transported to a variety of laboratories and has been used for other studies — including a project on the sensitive issue of the spread of lymphotropic viruses by intravenous drug use.

The case has opened a debate on what should happen to stored biological samples from completed projects, and whether they should be allowed to be moved between different research institutions.

Link to Nature news story

Reference: Nature 420, 111 (2002)
We encourage you to republish this article online and in print, it’s free under our creative commons attribution license, but please follow some simple guidelines:
  1. You have to credit our authors.
  2. You have to credit SciDev.Net — where possible include our logo with a link back to the original article.
  3. You can simply run the first few lines of the article and then add: “Read the full article on SciDev.Net” containing a link back to the original article.
  4. If you want to also take images published in this story you will need to confirm with the original source if you're licensed to use them.
  5. The easiest way to get the article on your site is to embed the code below.
For more information view our media page and republishing guidelines.