- Published on Friday, 17 March 2017 14:45
15 February 2017 / A new publication has reported unintended effects in genetically engineered rice producing precursors of vitamin A, so-called carotenoids. Crossing the manipulated rice with the Indian variety Swarna led to a nasty surprise: The resulting plants showed extensive disturbance in their growth. The researchers identified several reasons for this: The new gene constructs interfere with the plant’s own gene for producing growth hormones, and the additional gene constructs were not, as intended, active solely in the kernels, but also in the leaves. This led to a substantial reduction in the content of chlorophyll that is essential for vital functions in the plants.https://www.testbiotech.org/en/node/1859
Molecular and Functional Characterization of GR2-R1 Event Based Backcross Derived Lines of Golden Rice in the Genetic Background of a Mega Rice Variety Swarna
- Published on Friday, 17 March 2017 14:44
Homozygous Golden Rice lines developed in the background of Swarna through marker assisted backcross breeding (MABB) using transgenic GR2-R1 event as a donor for the provitamin A trait have high levels of provitamin A (up to 20 ppm) but are dwarf with pale green leaves and drastically reduced panicle size, grain number and yield as compared to the recurrent parent, Swarna. In this study, we carried out detailed morphological, biochemical and molecular characterization of these lines in a quest to identify the probable reasons for their abnormal phenotype. Nucleotide blast analysis with the primer sequences used to amplify the transgene revealed that the integration of transgene disrupted the native OsAux1 gene, which codes for an auxin transmembrane transporter protein. Real time expression analysis of the transgenes (ZmPsy and CrtI) driven by endosperm-specific promoter revealed the leaky expression of the transgene in the vegetative tissues. We propose that the disruption of OsAux1 disturbed the fine balance of plant growth regulators viz., auxins, gibberellic acid and abscisic acid, leading to the abnormalities in the growth and development of the lines homozygous for the transgene. The study demonstrates the conserved roles of OsAux1 gene in rice and Arabidopsis.http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0169600
- Published on Tuesday, 21 February 2017 14:43
THIRD WORLD NETWORK BIOSAFETY INFORMATION SERVICE
Dear Friends and Colleagues
Assessment of Stacked Bt Soybean Overlooks Potential Health Risks
In June 2012, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) approved, for the first time, genetically engineered stacked soybean MON87701 × MON89788, produced by Monsanto and sold under the brand name Intacta, for import and use in food and feed in the EU. The soybeans combine the expression of an insecticidal Bt toxin, Cry1Ac, present in the parental event MON87701, with herbicide resistance to glyphosate from parental event MON89788.
- Published on Tuesday, 17 January 2017 18:50
Dear friends, Donald Trump’s candidacy – with its simplistic policy positions and its undercurrent of racism and sexism – left most of us believing he couldn’t possibly win. Now his victory is a visceral shock from which many have still not recovered. To better understand what happened – and why – we need to broaden our horizons. If we zoom out a bit, it becomes clear that Trump is not an isolated phenomenon; the forces that put him in the White House have been growing throughout the Western world for some time. Earlier this year, the Brexit vote in the UK was also based on fear and narrow-minded nationalism, not on a sophisticated critique of EU economic policy.
Right-wing extremism is on the rise in many other parts of Europe; even in my native country of Sweden, where racism was all but absent during my younger years. If we zoom out even further, a broader pattern emerges. Almost everywhere in the world, unemployment is increasing, the gap between rich and poor is widening, environmental devastation is worsening, and a spiritual crisis – revealed in substance abuse, domestic assaults, and teenage suicide – is deepening.
By looking from a global perspective it becomes apparent that these many crises – including the rise of right-wing sentiments – share a common root cause: an increasingly corporatized and globalized economic system that is devastating not only planetary ecosystems, but the lives of hundreds of millions of people.Read more https://notthembutus.wordpress.com/2017/01/09/a-message-from-helena-norberg-hodge/
- Published on Monday, 09 January 2017 05:32
Organic farming: better for the climate, soil conservation, biodiversity and food security
This news will be of particular interest to those who have read about animal factory-farming methods (see the work of Tracy Worcester) and those who were earlier stunned by the exposure of systemic pesticides in ‘Roots of Evil’ (The Guardian 29.4.95) by Joanna Blythman.
In 2016, Scheherazade Daneshkhu, Consumer Industries Editor for the Financial Times, reported that home deliveries of organic vegetables have almost returned to pre-recession levels - £2.1bn in 2008.There has also been a higher demand for organic jam, tea, oils, organic cotton clothes and beauty products.
She cited the Soil Association’s 2016 Market Report, free to members, which recorded that sales of organic products rose last year by 4.9% to £1.95bn in the UK - the third year of consecutive growth for the UK organic sector, now worth £1.95bn. Sales of non-organic food dropped by 0.9%.
The Organic Research Centre is the UK’s leading independent research centre for the development of organic food production and land management solutions to climate change, soil and biodiversity conservation and food security.
Its detailed financial report on organic farming in England and Wales for 2014/15, published two months later also showed organic farm profits increasing, with organic dairy farming outperforming conventional dairy farming in England and Wales .Read on: https://foodvitalpublicservice.wordpress.com/2017/01/04/organic-farming-better-for-the-climate-soil-conservation-biodiversity-and-food-security/
- Published on Wednesday, 28 September 2016 14:44
In a world with an ever-increasing human population, increased food production is of obvious concern. With the world population projected to reach 9.6 billion by 2050, many people, especially those with connections to biotechnology and agrochemical companies, say that genetically modified food (GMO) is necessary in order to satisfy increased global demand for food. However, do we really need GMOs to feed the world? http://anonhq.com/indias-organic-rice-revolution-proves-gmos-unnecessary/