REYKJAVIK, Iceland, April 25 deCODE genetics(Nasdaq: DCGN) today expressed its enthusiastic support for the GeneticInformation Non-discrimination Act (GINA), a bill that, many years in themaking, is now moving swiftly through Congress and is expected to be signedpromptly by President Bush. GINA would provide a federal counterpart toexisting legislation in many states prohibiting discrimination againstindividuals in matters of employment or healthcare coverage based upon theresults of genetic tests or other genetic information.
deCODE was founded more than a decade ago with a simple mission: todiscover the key genetic factors involved in major challenges to publichealth, and to turn these discoveries into better means of diagnosing,treating and preventing disease. In that time, deCODE has established itselfas the world leader in discovering variations in the genome conferring risk ofa range of common diseases, from diabetes to heart attack to common cancers.It has done so through the participation in its gene discovery programs byhundreds of thousands of people from around the world, and has in the processpioneered genotyping, data mining, and data and privacy protection methods forvast sets of genetic and healthcare information. Through its CLIA-registeredreference laboratory the company now offers DNA-based risk assessment testsbased upon its discoveries in a growing number of common diseases, as well asan informational personal genome analysis service through which individualscan put themselves in the context of advances in the field of human genetics.
"Legislation like GINA represents an important step forward in keeping ourideas of civil rights and self determination up to date with advances inscience and medicine. Genetic information is deeply personal, but we have tobe able to share it and analyze it in order to contribute to betterhealthcare, not only our own but also for that of people around the world andof our children and grandchildren. My hope is that this sort of legislationwill help to ensure that people will be able to participate in research andutilize the rapid advances in genetics to preserve and improve their health,without fear that knowledge about their own genome might somehow later be usedagainst them. Once these protections are in place, we must also work to ensureclear and high standards are set for the scientific rigor and technicalquality of the genetic testing that is available, encouraging individuals,employers and healthcare providers to embrace the health and economic benefitsthese can provide," said Kari Stefansson, CEO of deCODE.
deCODE is a biopharmaceutical company applying its discoveries in humangenetics to the development of diagnostics and drugs for common diseases.deCODE is a global leader in gene discovery -- our population approach andresources have enabled us to isolate key genes contributing to major publichealth challenges from cardiovascular disease to cancer, genes that areproviding us with drug targets rooted in the basic biology of disease. Throughits CLIA-certified laboratory, deCODE is offering a growing range of DNA-basedtests for gauging risk and empowering prevention of common diseases, includingdeCODE T2(TM) for type 2 diabetes; deCODE AF(TM) for atrial fibrillation andstroke; deCODE MI(TM) for heart attack; and deCODE ProCa(TM) for prostatecancer. deCODE is delivering on the promise of the new genetics.(SM) Visit uson the web at www.decode.com; on our diagnostics website atwww.decodediagnostics.com; and, for our pioneering personal genome analysisservice, at www.decodeme.com.
Any statements contained in this presentation that relate to future plans,events or performance are forward-looking statements within the meaning of thePrivate Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-lookingstatements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that