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Presented By: Institute for Research on Women and Gender

Banking on DNA Futures

Thinking about Noninvasive Prenatal Tests in Comparative Contexts

Rayna Rapp Rayna Rapp
Rayna Rapp
Presented by Professor Rayna Rapp (Anthropology, New York University) and with Audrey Norby (U-M Fetal Diagnostic Center), Alexandra Minna Stern (U-M Obstetrics & Gynecology), and Elizabeth F.S. Roberts (U-M Anthropology), this discussion begins with an overview of the "endless frontier" in reproductive technology. Technologies of fertility regulation and control now proliferate in the developing world, beyond where they first made their debut: Europe, North America, Australia. Now, selective and expanding parts of the world -- not just the rich populations stratified in the global North -- occupy a long-term "existential gap" with regard to biomedical aspirations and fears, increasingly focused on infertile women, men, and fetuses. Prof. Rapp illustrates new iterations of the gap continually revised and expanded using the case of noninvasive prenatal tests (NIPTs), now making their way through the marketplace into the lives of America's pregnant women.

What does it mean to launch yet another technology that assumes total reproductive control over fetal disabilities can be achieved? This presentation highlights the hidden burdens and ethics of the rapid diffusion etched into the NIPTs.

This is part of the Feminist Science Studies program, directed by Sari van Anders. Cosponsors: Program in Sexual Rights and Reproductive Justice, and Science, Technology, & Society.
Rayna Rapp Rayna Rapp
Rayna Rapp
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