Washington politics and genetic engineering research: When worlds collide

Ira H. Carmen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In earlier research, I developed a notion of 'biopolitics' to help explain, first, the recombinant DNA debate of the 1970-1980s, and, second, the human gene transfer-therapy debate of the 1980-1990s. Drawing upon results gleaned from two recent meetings of high moment in the nation's capital, I expand upon the theoretical and empirical parameters of the biopolitical argument to elucidate the clash of policy preferences arising from two new areas of genetic experimentation: (i) human embryo research and (ii) the creation of commercially viable therapeutics to combat disease. I show the manner in which members of the biological science community and their policy allies are forced to cope with the realities of the 'Washington political game,' and why it is necessary for them to develop a sophisticated sense of what that 'game' is.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)97-108
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Gene Therapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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