Human Genomics in Global Health

Ask the Expert: ethicists

Dr Florencia Luna

Dr. Florencia Luna

Florencia Luna received an M.A. from the University of Columbia (USA) and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Buenos Aires. She directs the Bioethics Program at FLACSO (Latin American University of Social Sciences- Argentina) and at the University of Buenos Aires (UBA). She is an Independent Researcher at CONICET (National Scientific and Technological Research Council) since 2000.

She was a Board Member of the International Association of Bioethics (IAB) (1999-2007), and President of the IAB (2003-2005). She is a temporary advisor of World Health Organization (WHO) and the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences (CIOMS). She was a member of the Steering Committee of CIOMS working on the International Ethical Guidelines for Biomedical Research Involving Human Subjects (2002). In addition to directing a research program on bioethics at FLACSO, she was co-director with Ruth Macklin to train persons in ethics and research (2000-2006) and Director of a Training grant (2006-2011) of the Fogarty International Center (National Institutes of Health- NIH (US)). She has won the Guggenheim Foundation Fellow (2006) and has been awarded the Konnex Prize: Honor Diploma in Ethics in 2006, in recognition of important figures in Humanities in Argentina during the last decade (1996-2006). She is a visiting researcher at the Brocher Foundation (Switzerland) 2011 .

She is editor of Perspectivas bioeticas since 1996 (the first Argentinean journal wholly devoted to bioethics). She is the author of Bioethics and Vulnerability: A Latin American View (RODOPY, Amsterdam-US, 2006). She has co-authored several books and published articles in a variety of journals and in books. Dr. Luna has also been invited to give lectures in various universities. Presently she is working on issues related with research in developing countries and international research ethics, gender, cord blood banks and also in genetics and ethics.

Dr Abdallah Daar

Dr. Abdallah S. Daar

Dr. Daar is Professor of Public Health Sciences and of Surgery at the University of Toronto, where he is also Director of the Program in Applied Ethics and Biotechnology at the University of Toronto Joint Centre for Bioethics.

After medical school in London, England, he went to the University of Oxford where he did postgraduate clinical training in surgery and also in internal medicine, a doctorate in transplant immunology/immunogenetics, and a fellowship in transplantation. He was a clinical lecturer in Oxford for several years before going to the Middle East to help start two medical schools. He took up the foundation Chair of Surgery in Oman in 1988, where he also headed the research labs.

He has published two books (on tumour markers and on surgical radiology) and has over 200 publications in immunology, immunogenetics, transplantation, surgery, and bioethics. He chaired the WHO Consultation on Xenotransplantation and wrote the WHO Draft Guiding Principles on Medical Genetics and Biotechnology. He has been an expert advisor to WHO and OECD.

He is a Fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences and is on the Ethics Committee of the (International) Transplantation Society and of the Human Genome Organization. He holds the official world record for performing the youngest cadaveric donor kidney transplant. Professor Daar is also a member of the Institute Advisory Board, Institute of Infection and Immunity of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

In 1999 he was awarded the Hunterian Professorship of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. In 2000 he was appointed to the Roster of Experts for the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations / WHO Joint Consultations on Foods Derived from Biotechnology. He has been a Visiting Scholar in Bioethics at Stanford University and Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. Editorial Boards include World Journal of Surgery, Kidney Forum, Clinical Transplantation Proceedings and Bioethics.

His current research interests are in the exploration of how genomics and other biotechnologies can be used effectively to ameliorate global health inequities.