Complex genetic causation of human disease: Critiques of and rationales for heritability and path analysis
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Theoretical Medicine and Bioethics 10 (2) (1989)
This paper examines some criticisms that have been made of two standard genetic methodologies: heritability and path analysis. I conclude that the criticisms should be taken seriously, concerning both the accuracy of heritability measures and their significance. In light of the fact that such studies remain prominent in the literature, I consider what possible rationale they can retain consistent with these criticisms. In particular, I consider (1) a role in the identification of high-risk individuals and (2) a heuristic role in the planning of research strategy.
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