Along with my son Tim Wyatt, a religion and social affairs journalist, I run a podcast called Matters of Life and Death, which is part of the Premier network. Each episode is a conversation between the two of us discussing how Christians can engage with a particular issue around healthcare, ethics, technology, science or faith. You can subscribe to the podcast on all major podcast apps, including Spotify, Google Podcasts, and Apple Podcasts, or you can listen to our latest episodes below.

Genetics 2: Whole genome sequencing, Gattaca, de-identification versus anonymity, and Big Data Towers of Babel Matters of Life and Death

In this episode we pick up our conversation with clinical geneticist Melody Redman to talk about a new NHS programme in England which is piloting whole genome sequencing of newborn babies. Why are scientists and doctors interested in collecting a child’s entire set of genes and storing them for the rest of their life? What medical benefits might result from this, and what ethical challenges does it throw up? Just because we can now do this, should we? We also consider some of the risks of our increasingly geneticised world and how as Christians we can hold onto our identity in Christ rather than lapsing into genetic determinism. Find out more about the Newborn Genomes Programme here – https://www.genomicsengland.co.uk/initiatives/newborns The group Unique helps support people and families affected by rare chromosomal and genetic disorders – https://rarechromo.org/ Subscribe to the Matters of Life and Death podcast: https://pod.link/1509923173 
  1. Genetics 2: Whole genome sequencing, Gattaca, de-identification versus anonymity, and Big Data Towers of Babel
  2. Genetics 1: Rare diseases, libraries of recipe books, BRCA1, and precision medicine
  3. Suffering 2: Rediscovering lament, reciting psalms in bomb shelters, the Gethsemane prayer, and the realism of Christian hope
  4. Suffering 1: ’Adamah’, mystery and presence, the ever-smiling Buddha, and the lamb slain from the creation of the world
  5. Space 2: Astrobiology, 16 billion billion Earth-like planets, LUCA and the non-competitive Imago Dei
  6. Space 1: The James Webb telescope, extra-terrestrial life, hobbits of the universe and the doctrine of creation
  7. Simulation 2: Zoom’s face-smoothing, chatbot therapists, Trinitarianism, and evil as counterfeit
  8. Simulation 1: Deep fakes, David Beckham speaking Mandarin, Jean Baudrillard’s four phases, and image as sacrament
  9. Prenatal screening 2: The prohibition on soothsaying, transcending genetic determinism, a client-technician relationship and Heidi Crowter’s joyful self-advocacy
  10. Prenatal screening 1: Peering into the unknown, less than 1/150, blood tests over the internet, and disability doublethink

To find a full list of our entire back catalogue of episodes, click here.

If you have enjoyed listening to Matters of Life and Death, please share it with your friends and family and leave a review in your podcast app. We are also very interested in hearing questions or comments from listeners, so if you have any thoughts or would like to suggest a topic for us to cover, please email molad@premier.org.uk.