Perspectives of genetics for man.

Amândio S. Tavares


The human species attained a high technological development, which enables it to induce important alterations in jts environment and in the parameters of its own evolution. Genetics p!ays an important role in the study of such influences and in the solution of present problems of Mankind, as relates its future, genetic load and subsistence. The present objective of Genetics, as applied to the human being, is to understand what is inherited (and in what proportion). Hereditary diseases tend to occupy an important place among pathological entities and the physician’s objective, saving his patients, increases the genetic load of the population. adding a new stress to the human genome, already under the influence of social and cultural transformations. To analyse this effect, more data on human social biology are needed, as well as on the results of new medical and biological technologies. Genetic engineering, the study of biochemical polymorphisms and their eventual selective value, cytogenetic analysis of malformative syndromes or sexual maldevelopment and genetic counselling, should be developed and extended in the general population. However, genetic counselling should preserve the freedom of choice of the individual or the couple in order to avoid its transformation into a mere kind of eugenics and to maintain both the personality of those being at risk and the population’s genetic heteromorphism.

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