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Race: a Biological or Social Concept

  • Bernard Kwabi-AddoEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Race was once thought to be a real biological concept when anthropologists used study of the human skull as a way to justify racial differences and social inequality. Scientists no longer believe there is a biological basis to distinguish racial groups, rather, race is a social, cultural, and/or political construct wherein racial segregation has real consequences on health and health disparities. The biological basis of differential prevalence of disease susceptibility or resistance is due to genetic variations that exist in various racial and ethnic groups. Thus, race as a social concept can be used to categorize populations or groups based on disease susceptibility or resistance, and this offers promise for personalized/precision medicine as it applies to human health.

Keywords

Segregation Discrimination Genetic variation Ancestry Informative markers Traits 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Biochemistry and Molecular BiologyHoward UniversityWoodbridgeUSA

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