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"The Ethics Police?" on Thursday's Access Utah

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Research on human beings saves countless lives, but has at times harmed the participants. To what degree then should government regulate science, and how? The horrors of Nazi concentration camp experiments and the egregious Tuskegee syphilis study led the US government, in 1974, to establish Research Ethics Committees, known as Institutional Review Boards (IRBs) to oversee research on humans. The US now has over 4,000 IRBs, which examine yearly tens of billions of dollars of research -- all studies on people involving diseases, from cancer to autism, and behavior. Yet ethical violations persist. 

Robert L. Klitzman, M.D., is a Professor of Psychiatry in the College of Physicians and Surgeons and the Joseph Mailman School of Public Health, and the Director of the Masters of Bioethics Program at Columbia University. He has authored or co-authored over 100 articles and seven books, including Am I My Genes?; When Doctors Become Patients; Mortal Secrets (with Ronald Bayer); Being Positive; A Year-long Night; The Trembling Mountain; and In a House of Dreams and Glass. His work has appeared in JAMA, Science, and elsewhere, and he has also written for the New York Times, Newsweek, The Nation, and other publications.   

Tom Williams worked as a part-time UPR announcer for a few years and joined Utah Public Radio full-time in 1996. He is a proud graduate of Uintah High School in Vernal and Utah State University (B. A. in Liberal Arts and Master of Business Administration.) He grew up in a family that regularly discussed everything from opera to religion to politics. He is interested in just about everything and loves to engage people in conversation, so you could say he has found the perfect job as host “Access Utah.” He and his wife Becky, live in Logan.