Wallet-sized genome info on the way

AUSTRALIANS will soon be carrying their genome on a smart card, allowing them to confidently assist health practitioners and take ownership of their health, says one of the country’s top medical minds.

Nobel Prize winner Professor Barry Marshall is so convinced of the potential benefits of genome sequencing that he has submitted his own genome for processing. He hopes to be the first Australian to make their genome publicly available.

“It doesn’t bother me – I don’t care if people can see I have the gene for sticky ear wax,” he said ahead of an address to the National Press Club last week. 

“This is going to be an enormous and unprecedented help [to patient] health. But Australians currently seem too paranoid to truly embrace genomics.”

Legal changes in the US had made it illegal to rate people based on their genetic makeup, according to Professor Marshall.

“That means

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