Property Rights over Your Own Tissues and DNA

Property Rights over Your Own Tissues and DNA



Property Rights over Your Own Tissues and DNA

Law in many countries protects personal property and it is the right of the owner to control his /her property. Similarly, any individual should have a full right to his body tissues. This can apply in cases (Skloot, 2011). This is how people become subjected to testing of various research developments based on a person’s ability to respond to a component from a tissue analysis. Therefore, people should have property rights to tissue and DNA usage because it can lead to constant demands from scientists and the related person can become a test subject for experiments.

There are situations where scientists can profit from a person’s tissue. This may involve stealing tissue to experiment on chemicals and other scientific measures. This will lead to scientists developing cures and remedies and the reason for the success is never compensated. In addition, tissue and DNA can be used for cloning, which may not have been consensual (Skloot, 2011). However, without legal parameters, a patient cannot prevent such developments, which may lead to exploitation. Doctors and physicians may use excuses such as testing and may discover tissue to be invaluable and lead to the doctors seeking ways of keeping the patient in the hospital for further experimentation.

Other factors such as being a donor may become prominent from tissue analysis. In some cases, a doctor may take the organs from a person that does not understand rights and legal provisions leading to potential complications in the future (Skloot, 2011). This is exploitation and becomes a problem developed by doctors, but it may become a means of forcing a patient to remain at the hospital and pay more money for treatment. Therefore, there should be property rights to tissue and DNA.


Skloot, R. (2011). The Immortal life of Henrietta Lacks. New York: Broadway Paperbacks.

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