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CILE Organizes Research Forum on Genomics and Islamic Ethics in the WISH Summit 2016

CILE Organizes Research Forum on Genomics and Islamic Ethics in the WISH Summit 2016

CILE’s Executive Director Dr. Tariq Ramadan and CILE’s Academic Director Dr. Mohammed Ghaly had participated in the World Innovative Summit for Health (WISH) which was held in Doha on 29th and 30th November 2016. the Research Center for Islamic Legislation & Ethics (CILE), a member of the College of Islamic Studies at Hamad Bin Khalifa University, organized a panel during the Summit on “Genomics in the Gulf Region and Islamic Ethics: The Ethical Management of Incidental Findings”. This panel was moderated by AlJazeera English senior presenter Sami Zeidan and included the following panelists:

  • Tariq Ramadan, CILE Executive Director & Professor of Contemporary Islam at Oxford University
  • Mohammed Ghaly, Professor at the Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics (CILE), College of Islamic Studies, Hamad Bin Khalifa University
  • Muhammad Naim Yasin, Emeritus Professor, Faculty of Sharia, Jordan University
  • Nahla Afifi, Scientific and Education Manager, Qatar Biobank
  • Giuseppe Novelli, Centre of Excellence for Genomic Risk Assessment in Multifactorial and Complex Diseases, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy
  • Mohamed Haji AbdiNur, Minister of Health of Somalia

The panel discussed a report issued by the WISH research forum that was chaired by Dr. Mohammed Ghaly who co-authored this report with other six renowned experts in various fields including biomedical sciences and bioethics:

  • Eman Sadoun (Ministry of Public Health, Research Division, Qatar)
  • Fowzan Alkuraya (King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre, Saudi Arabia)
  • Khalid Fakhro (Sidra Medical Research Center & Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar, Qatar)
  • Ma’n Zawati (Centre of Genomics and Policy at McGill University, Canada)
  • Said Ismail (Qatar Biobank & Qatar Genome Project, Qatar)
  • Tawfeg Ben-Omran (Hamad Medical Corporation & Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar, Qatar)

Summary of the Report

In much the same way that genomic technologies are changing the landscape of biomedical research, the ethical issues these technologies generate are setting today’s agenda of ethics research. The distinct ethical issues concerning the management of incidental findings represent a serious challenge that has occupied the minds of Western bioethicists for a while, but has yet to capture due attention from specialists in the Muslim world. Incidental findings are generally defined as results that arise although they were not part of the original purpose of the research project or clinical test. Ethical management of these findings is not a simple matter, because while they can be lifesaving, they can also lead to harmful consequences for the individual and community at large, and at other times lack any clear significance.

This study is an attempt to fill the current lacuna in Islamic literature by addressing some aspects of the ethical management of incidental findings from an Islamic perspective. The study is divided into three main chapters. The first chapter offers an overview of recent genomic initiatives in the Gulf region, with special reference to initiatives by two nations: Qatar and Saudi Arabia. After this first-hand information about these primary initiatives in the Gulf region, the second chapter broadens the scope by reviewing international deliberations on the ethical management of incidental findings. By including these two chapters, we want to emphasize that Islamic bioethics should be interdisciplinary in nature, and informed as well by deliberations and discussions beyond the Islamic tradition. We hope that this interdisciplinary character will become more evident and better integrated in follow-up studies. The third chapter is dedicated to the core purpose of this study, namely delineating Islamic bioethical discussions related to incidental findings. To make the study accessible for non-specialists in Islamic studies, introductory notes are included about the field of Islamic bioethics in the following links:



Media Coverage (English)

Media Coverage (Arabic)

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