The Genie is out of the bottle: DNA testing and the end of donor anonymity

Monday, June 17, 2019 - 17:30 to 19:30

The rise of direct-to-consumer DNA testing means more people are finding out they are not genetically related to family members in the way they always thought. Some are matching with strangers whose relationship to them may be described as parent or half sibling.

DNA testing is also being used together with genealogy and internet searches to trace donors and donor siblings. As this becomes more affordable, more people are accessing it, increasing the chance of connections.

These trends have major implications for donor-conceived people, their parents and donors. The following panel of speakers will unpack this complex issue:

  • Kate Bourne, a counsellor and manager of the VARTA Donor Registers Services
  • Professor David Amor, a leading Melbourne geneticist
  • Rose Overberg, a donor-conceived woman who located her donor through DNA testing and genealogy, and now assists others to find genetic relatives
  • Kieran, a woman who discovered she was donor-conceived and found her donor via DNA testing
  • Hayley Smith, a woman who worked out who her donor was from DNA detective work but chose to apply to the Central Register so outreach could be managed by VARTA
  • Professor Daniel Roos, a sperm donor who was contacted by his donor offspring as a result of DNA detective work.

When: Monday 17 June 5.30pm – 7.30pm (Refreshments will be served from 5.30pm for a 6.00pm start)

Where: Russell Kennedy Lawyers, Level 12, 469 La Trobe Street Melbourne

Cost: Tickets $30 (students $10)

Members of general public and health or legal professionals are welcome to attend. 

As there are limited places available, please register early to avoid disappointment.

For more information please contact the event coordinator, Renee de Silva at [email protected] or call 03 8622 0512.

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