To the Editor Dr Tomlinson and colleagues1 reported findings from a survey of 1599 US residents, exploring the public’s willingness to donate tissue and information to a fictional research biobank. The authors highlighted that the traditional ethical standard of specific consent to each future research study does not correspond with the actual preferences of many people. This accords with emerging consensus that specific consent is ill-suited to the nature of longitudinal biomedical research using tissues and large data sets, in which future uses of these materials are typically unforeseeable.
Dove ES, Prainsack B. Ethical Standards for Research Biobank Donation. JAMA. 2015;313(15):1573–1574. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.2748