It has been suggested that genomic research is frequently inappropriately hyped, in both the popular press and the scientific literature, and that this hype has the potential to create a range of social concerns. This paper maps the complex array of social forces that contribute to the phenomenon of hype, including the pressure to publish, the increasingly intense commercialization agenda, the messaging emanating from research institutions, the news media and, even, the public itself. These numerous and interrelated factors create a ‘hype pipeline’ that will be difficult to counter without the utilization of a wide range of policy strategies.

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