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Anneke Lucassen

Professor of Genomic Medicine. Director of the Centre for Personalised Medicine

My research career started by investigating the molecular genetics of common diseases in the 1990s (during my DPhil in Oxford) with an ambition to translate laboratory findings into the clinic to improve the identification and management of heritable diseases. I soon realised that in order to do so effectively, we first needed to know how to address some of the ethical and legal issues that arise in genetic- and genomic- medicine, and this has been the focus of my research ever since.

As professor of Clinical Genetics at the University of Southampton I set up a translational research group with expertise in molecular research, social science research, and direct contact with patients to provide an effective translation pipeline, focusing on the anticipation -and removal - of barriers to implementation. It functions as an ELSA lab: addressing the ethical, legal and social aspects of developments in big data relevant to health, and I co-lead one of 5 themes within the Southampton NIHR Biomedical Research Centre [Data, Health and Society].

I was delighted to move [back] to Oxford in September 2021 and bring this research to the Centre for Human Genetics, where our research programme addresses what needs to happen to ensure the benefits of genomic discovery have direct relevance to patients and society. We have made field changing contributions to understanding the ethical aspects of for example: misattributed genetic relationships; familial contact tracing in genetics; unanticipated clinical predictions from genomic findings genetic testing of children for adult diseases; high rates of spurious results from direct to consumer genetic tests; the hybrid territory between research and clinical practice.  These have been incorporated into clinical guidelines and position statements.

Our research outputs have helped initiate and shape policy via various national roles. For example, I was a commissioner on the Human Genetics Commission until 2012; the  Nuffield Council of Bioethics 2009-2015; the HFEA scientific review of treatment of mitochondrial diseases 2011-2014 and I sat on the Genomics England Ethics Advisory committee from 2014 to 2024. I was the inaugural chair of the British Society for Genetic Medicine (BSGM) Ethics and Policy committee, and chaired the society from 2016-2020. I chair the ethics advisory committee of UK Biobank and the joint committee of genomic medicine- JCGM (a royal college of physician/ pathology/ BSGM committee).

I am an Honorary Consultant in Clinical Genetics ( 



Direct Entry Research Degrees Doctoral Training Centre Degrees