Evaluating Direct-to-Consumer Marketing of Race-Based Pharmacogenomics: A Focus Group Study of Public Understandings of Applied Genomic Medication

School of Communication Studies, Ohio University, Athens, Ohio 45710, USA.
Journal of Health Communication (Impact Factor: 1.61). 11/2004; 9(6):541-59. DOI: 10.1080/10810730490882720
Source: PubMed


Some medical providers have advocated applied genomics, including the use of genetically linked racial phenotypes in medical practice, raising fear that race-based medication will become justified. As with other emerging medical genetic technologies, pharmaceutical companies may advertise these treatments. Researchers fear that consumers will uncritically accept pharmaceutical messages and demand the product. In this exploratory study, we examined public reactions to advertisements for applied genomic medications. A focus group methodology was employed. Participants tended to resist the message and generated warrants for doing so, indicating critical reception of the messages. Message accepters also provided warrants. Warrants for resistance and acceptance differ between self-identified racial groups. Consumers, health care providers, and pharmaceutical corporations will benefit from a better understanding of direct-to-consumer advertisements as medical communication. Our study concludes that both advocates and opponents of direct-to-consumer advertisements should recognize that potential consumers of pharmacogenomics act as critical consumers of health advertising discourse.

Download full-text


Available from: Tina M Harris, Jan 09, 2014
  • Source
    • "rican - American women . Reports have documented the limited uptake of genetic services by African - American women ( Armstrong et al . , 2005 ) . Discrimination is a common concern reported in studies of African - Americans , both racial and other forms of discrimination as well as concerns of privacy and confidentiality ( Laskey et al . , 2003 ; Bates et al . , 2004 ; Sussner et al . , 2011 ) . Lower uptake may be due to lower knowledge and / or perceived disease risk ( Halbert et al . , 2005 ; MacNew et al . , 2010 ; Akinleye et al . , 2011 ; Long et al . , 2011 ) , although interest in some types of genetic testing appear high ( Kessler et al . , 2005 ; Long et al . , 2011 ) , particularly in ind"
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Pharmacogenetic (PGx) tests are intended to improve therapeutic outcomes through predicting a patient's likelihood to respond to or experience an adverse effect from a specific treatment. In addition, PGx testing may also generate ancillary, or incidental, disease information unrelated to the purpose for which the test was ordered. To assess public attitudes toward PGx testing, ancillary disease risk information and related clinical issues, we conducted a series of focus groups. Forty-five individuals recruited from Durham, NC, participated in four focus groups. Overall, participants were enthusiastic about PGx testing, though expressed concerns about privacy, confidentiality, and psychological harms associated with ancillary information. Focus group participants believed that physicians had a responsibility to disclose ancillary risk information, but were concerned about managing and coping with unexpected disease risk information. We find that participants welcomed the integration of PGx testing into therapeutic decision-making. Public concerns about PGx testing and ancillary information specifically centered on personal implications of learning such additional information, suggesting that patient-provider discussion of the benefits and risks of testing will be necessary until public familiarity with these tests increases.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2011 · Genetic Testing and Molecular Biomarkers
  • Source

    Full-text · Article ·

  • No preview · Article · May 2005 · Health Communication
Show more