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2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 6:16 AM

Roundup-ready GMO corn has been approved for human consumption based upon 90 day feeding studies which found no evidence of a risk. For the first time, a longer feeding study has been completed and published, which found that rats fed the GMO corn or Roundup began to develop tumors after 4-7 months, developed 2-3 times the number of tumors compared with the control group, and had much higher rates of premature death.

http://o.canada.com/2012/09/20/health-canada-to-review-gm-corn-study-promises-action-if-theres-a-demonstrated-risk/

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#1

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 10:03 AM

This study appears to be flawed for several reasons....Here's an article on the "scientist" that performed the research...French biologist Gilles-Eric Séralini....

http://www.forbes.com/sites/henrymiller/2012/02/22/the-science-of-things-that-arent-so/

Secondly the rats were fed water with the herbicide added, and the corn...at up to 33% concentration....This study should have been conducted on just the corn or just the herbicide....as it was done, the results are not specific....

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 10:32 AM
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#3
In reply to #1

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 2:19 PM

Wow, that is one inflammatory article at Forbes... I can hardly believe such statements would be published, but I guess the pay was worth it.

FYI, a search for Seralini, GE at PubMed turned up 21 publications in reputable peer reviewed journals since 1990. Many of the articles were considered important enough to be made available as full text through PubMedCentral, including his review of methodological issues in research on GMO products, published in the International Journal of Biological Science. On the cursory look, Seralini is a completely reputable researcher whose scientific work has largely focused on aromatase and its biological effects and importance, which led into his cancer research and to his work on pesticides and GMO products.

The Forbes article which claims Seralini's work is "poorly designed" begins by criticizing the use of in vitro human cell line studies. Human cell studies are accepted as having significant scientific value and are the backbone of medical science today. They are more relevant than other types of in vitro toxicity assay, and they are used extensively to obtain the necessary indications for further research in vivo.

Second, the article claims the cells are artificially "naked" and that the toxin in question could not pass through the GI epithelium in a live animal. This argument actually defeats its own claim - since the toxin that doesn't pass through the epithelium must be excreted by the kidneys, ergo the assay using "naked" kidney cells is perfectly reasonable and well designed.

Third, the claim that the dosage used was too high, would have to be leveled at a massive body of research on toxicology, in which it is usual to test the result of a higher than casual dosage to get baseline toxicity information. We accept the results of the same methodology and expect to find the same used in studies of all other stuff, so there is no basis for singling out Seralini's work in this regard.

Compare, if you like, the PubMed listings for the author Miller, Henry I, which contains no actual scientific research, consisting instead of political puff or opinion pieces which amount to an industry lapdance. The man has never designed, conducted, nor published experimental work in his life, afaict. Bruce M Chassy's listings are fewer but similarly toned, calling for less regulation and less science. These careers were bought and paid for at the FDA.

As for the present subject of this post, the criticism of in vitro research is not applicable to the subsequent study which has just been released, which is a long term in vivo feeding trial with highly significant results. I haven't read the full study yet, but afaict your final comment is also incorrect: there were three separate groups of animals in the study: corn, herbicide, and control.

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#4
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 4:05 PM

Well 33% roundup in the water? It's a miracle they didn't die instantly! Seriously that's like the equivalent of a human drinking a quart a day of the best herbicide on the market...for a lifetime! There is also the question of the researcher failing to provide the amount of food consumed by the rats, when it's well known that this particular type is prone to tumor growth when offered unrestricted access to food....Add to that the researcher is biased against genetically modified foods, which have been used in this country for some 20 years....Now I'm not saying that a prolonged study might not be good to find any effects of long term exposure at realistic levels that could effect health in humans, in fact I think this is absolutely necessary...I just think this is being blown way out of proportion...and linking all GM foods is tantamount to a criminal act....

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#5
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 4:17 PM

Those are the offspring of the rats that drank 144 diet colas per day in that "well researched" study.

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#7
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 5:33 PM

Solar Eagle, where did you get that figure? I just downloaded and read the first pages of the paper itself, (pdf linked here) where the experimental diets are described, and there is no such test involving 33% Roundup in water. According to the authors' introduction, the treatment with Roundup (R) was ".. R alone at very low environmentally relevant doses starting below the range of levels permitted by regulatory authorities in drinking water and in GM feed."

The methods section states : "The dry rat feed was made to contain 11, 22 or 33% of GM maize, cultivated either with or without R, or 33% of the non-transgenic control line. The concentrations of the transgene were confirmed in the three doses of each diet by qPCR. All feed formulations consisted in balanced diets, chemically measured as substantially equivalent except for the transgene, with no contaminating pesticides over standard limits." As described, the standard "rat chow" contained at most 1/3 of GMO corn or 1/3 of isogenic non-GMO corn, grown in the same area and prepared and analyzed very carefully prior to the study.

In addition to your comment being hogwash, the criticism which I read, suggesting that the rats weren't fed a balanced diet, is also apparently bullwallow. WHY AM I NOT SURPRISED. go eat your tortillas, there's a good boy

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#9
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 6:10 PM

Have you read the study...?

http://www.biolsci.org/v05p0706.htm

Does it seem conclusive to you?

You are correct that the water did not contain the concentration I cited, I was in a hurry and misquoted... But the good Doctor is best known for his stance against GM foods...

http://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gilles-%C3%89ric_S%C3%A9ralini

If you ask me he's trying to protect France's and other European markets from the highly productive but proprietary technology held by Monsanto...Monsanto feeds the world, is more than just a slogan....Just ask any corn farmer...

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#12
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 8:08 PM

I just finished reading it to the end - and it's not the same one you linked there, which is a prior study and a re-analysis of the data from one of the industry-sponsored 90 day feeding studies. This is the new one, please do read it:

Séralini, G.-E., et al. Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize. Food
Chem. Toxicol. (2012), http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.fct.2012.08.005

After reading it, I'm much less impressed with the criticisms I read, and I regret I repeated and linked them up in my earlier post, as they turned out to be false, spurious and just plain ignorant.

For one thing, it is very clear that food and water consumption were in fact measured, and the general finding that there was no evidence of food aversion nor any significant weight differences in the groups is reported, and is sufficient reason not to include the data in the publication. The data does exist, however, and would no doubt be provided to anyone who wants to crunch those numbers looking for a source of error that isn't present. All of the rats had a 3 week acclimatization to the study environment before the experiment began, after which they were randomly assigned on a weight basis to the various groups. This is a reasonable approach to randomizing the tendency to overeat if present in the population. The control group was fed ad libitum like the rest, so if the freely available food was a factor it should have shown up in the control as well. I see no basis for the criticism.

Several writers complained that the control was not represented in figure 1, but this isn't the case. There's clearly a treatment labeled "0" which represents the control... if the commentator can't read figures, he's in the wrong business to be critical of scientific work.

I am not personally knowledgeable enough to comment on the statistical methods, but it is clear that this is due to the author's choice of advanced methods which are new, not only to me, but to a number of scientists who commented that it was unorthodox and 'difficult to interpret'. The use of groups n=20 instead of 50 or larger is also commented by the author with reference to literature which I have not read, so this may also be justifiable. I don't see any reason to dismiss the results on that basis, unless one has the statistical expertise to do so.

One of the significant criticisms was that the study did not show a linear dose-response effect which is expected in toxicological studies. However the figures are pretty clear that there is a linear increase followed by a sharp dropoff at the highest dosage of the GMO corn, consistent with endocrine effects, not "toxin" effects, while the linear dose-response to Roundup-only follows the usual toxicology pattern. The author's comments and the biochemical data concerning disruption of specific endocrine markers is clear enough to me - but then I have read scads of biochemical and pharmacodynamic studies on naturally occurring substances, so I know that in some cases small doses produce one effect while larger doses produce the opposite. Life is complicated. Endocrine disruptions and carcinogenesis are complicated. The results look sound to me.

Overall, I think the paper is quite well written and the study well designed and of a high professional standard, and the conclusions that are drawn are reasonable: "Altogether, the significant biochemical disturbances and physiological failures documented in this work confirm the pathological effects of these GMO and R treatments in both sexes, with different amplitudes. We propose that agricultural edible GMOs and formulated pesticides must be evaluated very carefully by long term studies to measure their potential toxic effects."

Evaluate with long term studies. I'm all for it. 90 days is not enough.

Are you a corn farmer, btw?

Seralini is a scientist with a very distinguished career before ever becoming involved in research on GMO foods and pesticides. His work is of a high standard, and he is a brave man to stand up to the mudslinging by Monsanto's crew.

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#13
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 9:16 PM

Well I'm afraid I'll have to agree with you....No I'm not a corn farmer, but I am a corn eater, and I don't think I'd want to eat any of these particular GM's...Currently it seems this corn is only being used in feed for farm animals, but has been cleared for human consumption....Now I don't know if this corn was only intended for feed until further testing could be done and they had to have that clearance to use it as feed, but I see no designation that was the purpose, but of course they probably wouldn't say anyway....So FDA do your thing.....SE

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#14
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 10:17 PM

GA on that...

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#15
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 11:27 PM

GA. You seem to have a very good analysis of this study. My further question would be; do we eat the beef that has been fed such corn? It also seems there are two camps where one does not want to have any objections to this corn; whereas, a second group will disrespect anything that is GM. It is obvious to me, that there are some good GM foods and then we have studies that indicate we should go a little more cautiously before accepting all GM foods. The roundup corn seems to fit into the latter group. I will try to read some of the referenced articles as time permits.

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#22
In reply to #15

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 7:10 AM

Hi Kevin,

Well, there's nothing here to answer your question about beef that has been fed the corn. If we were to extrapolate from the rat study results (to form a testable hypothesis) we might expect that no endocrine effects would be expected from the corn in animals whose diet was over a 33% GMO corn "threshhold". This is because substances which turn biochemical pathway switches on/off don't function when the organism is swamped with them - the body recognizes the higher amount as "noise" and no longer responds. The direct use of BGH in cattle feed is likelier to carry over into the food chain and pose an endocrine health issue. Roundup residues in water also look like a more serious health risk and are a consequence of using R-ready crops.

Yes, the debate about GMO foods is highly polarized, to the point of becoming irrational at either extreme. The trouble is, the pro-GMO factions want (and have gotten) the foods approved without adequate study, and want (and have gotten) the right to sell the inadequately tested product without a label.

One of the bizarre and unscientific arguments by pro-GMO advocates is that it's already in the food chain, and there's no sign of adverse effects. If they had labeled the product, and people knew how much of it they'd eaten, it would be possible to do an actual epidemiological study to find whether there are or are not adverse effects. As it stands, the anti-labeling approach prevents the relevant data from ever being known...

Afaik, the vast majority of GMO crops are either roundup-ready and/or BT ie they are pesticide-related modifications, rather than crop improvement. I was reading last night, that the genetic modification work on other crop issues eg productivity, nutritional value, stress resistance etc. has not been so successful, and that is too bad. Nothing of the kind has come to market, not because of anti-GMO concerns or protests, but because the products couldn't be stabilized and/or didn't have the financial backing to go commercial.

I was reading some very promising work this summer, in which a gene for stress resistance which is present in barley and spinach could be introduced to more sensitive crops such as tomatoes. There's nothing in that transgene to raise health issues since it's already present in foods, and it would really be a boon to farmers. I hear the corn crop in the States this year has also been devastated by drought. Lets hope that the promise of GM techniques for those important issues can be realized - with the necessary tests for any health issues, of course! In the meantime, conventional breeding is still the path to crop improvement.

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#20
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 6:34 AM

This is slightly off topic, but what price do we pay for Monsanto feeding the world? Monsanto has destroyed farming in several developing nations by giving them "free" GMO seed. After the developing farmer has used he GMO seed for several cycles and no longer has heritage seed available Monsanto stops the "free" seed and makes the local farmer pay for Monsanto see. It is nothing more than a clever lead/loss marketing ploy disguised as a humanitarian gesture to make the world dependent on Monsanto.

And BTW Mosanto will encourage the surpression of these studies on the efects of GMO and diet in order to support their business.

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#21
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 6:54 AM

Monsanto are no different to any other company. They are doing what they do in response to market pressures.

The world needs higher crop yields. If these higher yields are at the expense of inefficient cropping practices then so be it. If Monsanto get a royalty from that then all the power to them.

If there is a demand for crops produced in a different way then the market will decide, a price will be set and the niche consumers can pay top dollar for the niche products. If nobody is prepared to pay for these niche products then they will not be farmed.

Look, even in these developing nations most of the effort is put into growing staple crops not truffles, artichokes and mulberries...but still there are some farmers who can make a living from growing these niche crops.

There is no compulsion here just the invisible hand of the market at work.

We live in precarious times friend.

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#6

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 5:13 PM

A few years ago there was a study published that showed that by just simply being alive you have a 100% chance of dying from something.

So far its the most accurate and conclusive study I have ever seen.

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#8
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 5:49 PM

Amen to that. Still, food is one of my favourite things, and the right to choose what I want to eat is another of my favourite things.

A company that doesn't want their food product tested, and will fight in court to make sure that their product is not boldly labeled on the package... you gotta wonder. Everybody else seems to think that promotion is good and wants their name front and center, but these guys want it slipped in the food without anyone's knowledge or consent. Ewwwww. I smell a monsanto.

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#10
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 6:59 PM

Farmers can buy any seed they want....They use Monsanto because it works....It costs more, but it's well worth it....

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#37
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/24/2012 3:09 PM
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#11
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/21/2012 7:18 PM

Use of Monsanto sweet corn seed has reduced the use of pesticides by 85%....

http://monsantoblog.com/2012/05/31/monsanto-gm-sweet-corn-debunking-false-claims/

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#18
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 1:44 AM

As far as genetic modification goes, the results of any two humans breeding together produce some very strange results, with fairly high instances of cancer and birth defects. Therefore, we should ban human intercourse. Environmentalism is rapidly turning into a religion, impervious to evidence. I refuse to be worried all my life. Politics is bad enough.

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#16

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 1:10 AM

Sorry, Solar#11 That is an ignorant statement, that the farmer can buy any seed he wants. THAT is exactly at the center of the controversy.

Undesired crosspollination to adiacent fields occur, including to other plants. Map out the consequences yourself. Where is then the: "farmer can buy any seed, then"?

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#17

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 1:39 AM

I read my usual four layers down and found this: http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/pages/press_releases/12-09-19_gm_maize_rats_tumours.htm They are not happy with this experiment's statistics, reporting, or peer review.

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#19

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 5:36 AM

This is most alarming.

If GM corn can give rats cancer imagine what GM corn derived ethanol would do to your car's engine!!

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#23
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 7:31 AM

!!!.... oversized or misshapen ball bearings?

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#24

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 11:20 AM

As usual I see polarization here but find the comments by Artsmith to be both reasonable and well though out- this is not my field of expertize but when a Judge here in Canada rules that seeds or spores blown from a monsanto fed crop to a neighbouring farm using normal seed must pay monsanto the royalty for all his normal crop for the seeds blown over then something is wrong- yes business must proceed but we should expect honour and respect for health over profit from those in the agroindustry- and from where I sit it is not happening- just try and find crops today grown from historic unmodified sources- I want to be able to choose what I eat and both labelling and respect factor in

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#26
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 12:36 PM

Choosing what you eat will be nothing but a dream if staple crop yields do not increase with global demand.

If food runs short you'll eat what you can get and be grateful.

If you want to continue to be able to choose what you eat then it's a little disingenuous to lambast those who are working towards feeding those who do not care about choice.

Choice is a luxury. Luxuries have a price.

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#32
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 7:52 PM

What happened to the statistic that enough food to feed the world could be grown in an area the size of Pennysylvania- -the statement is disengenious when you look at the vacant farmland caused by the agro industry

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#28
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 12:53 PM

Monsanto, from what I've read, has never imposed royalty fee's for cross pollination, even though they do have the right legally....and I might add, they are not the only player here, Dupont Pioneer is, I believe, even larger...

Gene flow FAQ's...

http://www2.dupont.com/Biotechnology/en_US/science_knowledge/gene_flow/c2c_faq.html

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#30
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 1:24 PM

SE, if you continually use the corporate blogs and pages as your source, do you think you may be subject to a little bias?

According to this news article, Monsanto has filed 211 lawsuits against farmers and 700 more settled out of court. The lawsuit filed by farmers against Monsanto is to stop their practices of sending inspectors onto private land to take "samples", followed by harrassment and lawsuits. Oh yeah, and the report-your-neighbour hotline is also very popular.

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#33
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Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 7:54 PM

Check the ruling in western Canada, they sued and won- the truth hurts when you have an adverse mind set

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#25

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 12:12 PM

First, in #17 I was a bit impolite. Late night brainfog, I apologize. The facts stand.

Artsmith is ably running this thread, needs little help.

What I want to emphasize, is the end effect on humans and in general animal life. I am definitely NOT a worrywart, or a believer in this, that, or something else.

BUT, we have to differentiate between experiments that can be reversed, and experiments - once introduced - cannot ever be undone. Then we have to live with the consequences, good, bad or indifferent.

The recombinant DNA series experiment is the first kind. Run responsibly, whole areas avoided, because the best and brightest could not foresee the consequences. Once more proven knowledge is established, there is always a tomorrow to do the experiments.

The GMO area in general belongs to the second kind. When they came out, scientists etc. swore on a stack of bible, that its pollen won't spread, and it did. Then they swore, that it won't be spreading to other species. And it did. It is now an uncontrollable, undoable experiment running its course.

I am fairly sure. that such things occurred time and again during the history of Earth. BUT, I was not part of it, and I do not care to be part of such a global experiment. Am I against advancement? Rather, I am all for it. But, rushing into something, because some marketing type wants it yesterday, as his bonus depends on it (to mention one of a slew of not-so-good faith actors) is all the bad reasons. Now we are stuck with it.

As an example see Wikipedia for "gluten" and "BT", or "bacteria Thuringiensis" and "roundup".

What I learned for biochemistry is, that you cannot throw anything at your digestive system, and expect it to deal with it 24/7. Some of it will leak thru in the process, recognized as a foreign protein and attacked by your immune system. And you are suffering from the ensuing inflammation. Gluten in seasonally small amounts is eaten for maybe 10thousand years. BT and roundup is as strange to your body as it can get. Considering our genetic diversity, some will react badly to various degree. This is not a theoretical. When it is you, it is 100%. And the consequences are all yours.

Your body did not evolve to ingest the same stuff year round, rather food was available seasonally. That is a key factor in immune reactions. GMO messes with this picture, as it is mixed into hundreds of prepared foods, labeled correctly or not.

There is more, than one way to attack a problem (food availability). Many good economists state, it is political, distribution problem. I read enough about intense hothouse production about 10x to 100x higher productivity. Does it require a basic attitude change? Heck, yeah!!

For business aspects, read #25.

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#27

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 12:53 PM

Ironically, as it turns out, the link SE posted to a prior paper is an analysis of the data from the 90 day feeding studies conducted by Monsanto to get approval of this and other GMO corn products...

"Have you read the study...?

http://www.biolsci.org/v05p0706.htm"

It turns out that the original studies by Monsanto also used groups of 20 (or 10) animals (and the same type, Sprague-Dawley rats), so the often-repeated criticism about statistical weakness in Seralini's research applies equally to those original studies, on which the product was claimed to be safe in the first place.

There's a longish documentary film "The World According to Monsanto" which makes some grim points about the company history of suppressing or manipulating data concerning toxicity of their products (including PCB's, Agent Orange, etc in the old days), their involvement in FDA and influence on US government, and the number of reputable scientists who have been fired and/or discredited or silenced, for raising legitimate concerns or for reporting research results that have negative implications for the unstudied and unregulated status of the enterprise.

I can only take the most questionable "scientific" criticism in that light, knowing that the professionals can expect ridicule and punishment if they publicly state that Seralini's work is valid. Shameful, all the same.

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#29
In reply to #27

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 1:21 PM

First let me say, I agree with you.....I was playing the devil's advocate here, to produce some substance to the debate...Second, corn as it exists today, is not naturally occurring...it has been selectively bred for ~7000 years...

"Corn as we know it today would not exist if it weren't for the humans that cultivated and developed it. It is a human invention, a plant that does not exist naturally in the wild. It can only survive if planted and protected by humans.

Scientists believe people living in central Mexico developed corn at least 7000 years ago. It was started from a wild grass called teosinte. Teosinte looked very different from our corn today. The kernels were small and were not placed close together like kernels on the husked ear of modern corn. Also known as maize Indians throughout North and South America, eventually depended upon this crop for much of their food."

ref link...

GM corn is grown all over the world.....

"Genetically modified (GM) maize is one of the 25 GM crops grown commercially in 2011.[24] Grown since 1997 in the United States and Canada, 86% of the US maize crop was genetically modified in 2010[25] and 32% of the worldwide maize crop was GM in 2011.[26] As of 2011, Herbicide-tolerant maize varieties are grown in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, El Salvador, EU, Honduras, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, the Russian Federation, Singapore, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand, and USA, and insect-resistant corn is grown in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Egypt, EU, Honduras, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Romania, Russian Federation, South Africa, Switzerland, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, USA, and Uruguay.[27]"

ref link...

This, pictured above, is why we have enough to eat....

"DuPont Pioneer is the world's leading developer and supplier of advanced plant genetics, providing high-quality seeds to farmers in more than 90 countries. Pioneer provides agronomy support and services to help increase farmer productivity and profitability and strives to develop sustainable agriculture systems for people everywhere."

ref link...

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#31
In reply to #29

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/22/2012 2:21 PM

Topic is drifting... But I will respond anyway - increasing yields are not due to GMO corn. They are due to better hybrids - produced by conventional breeding.

As you may know, certified organic producers cannot use GMO seed whatsoever. This article reports OSU tests in 2006, the corn hybrids tested produced more bushels per acre under organic production than they did in conventional. A Cornell study the previous year found that organic corn and soy production was as good as conventional, and better in drought conditions, while using 30 % less fossil energy and also less water.

The present GMO products have no bearing on yield - they exclusively add herbicide resistance or BT. Roundup ready means lower labour cost because you don't have to pull weeds, but it doesn't give a higher yield.

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#38
In reply to #31

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/25/2012 9:30 AM

Monsanto is a byword for "despicable lying business practice" here in the UK. They don't just give/sell the seed to the African farmers - they insist on exclusive tie-ins and provide seed whose offspring can not be saved and sown. The seed sown is not always totally suitable for the farmers' climate. [Aside: mobile phone companies have done the same thing: we're getting to the end of their 2 years free offer and Africans (it's mostly in that continent) are being hit with bills having become dependent on mobile phones for communications and commercial interaction.]

There have been a couple of programmes on BBC Radio 4 (our public service speech radio station, a sort of "mother" to The World Service) on the problems that are now being seen by farmers who have been planting Roundup ready crops for a few years.

What is happening is that the roundup has cleared the majority of weeds in the area - weeds don't make it to flowering, no seeds, no more weeds - but a couple of species are resistant and are thriving (no competition - roundup nutricious??) to the point where the plants are taller than the crop (I wondered why they didn't pull them out when they were smaller if the roundup wasn't working). This, iirc, was in South America.

Some of the farmers interviewed have spent vast extra sums to tackle the weeds and get the crop to harvest.

The GM firms (Monsanto wasn't mentioned by name) are wanting to sell another GM crop that is resistant to a different weedkiller.

Have we learnt nothing? Using myxamatosis to cull rabbits resulted in a modern rabbit population mostly resistant to myxa. Introducing pathegens or predators into an ecosystem throws the balance point elsewhere, usually to a point less advantageous to humans. It is rarely, if ever, possible to undo the action: cats to Australia is one example.

The 7000 years of plant breeding that has gone on has been bounded by what the plants will "allow" and has resulted in increased yields; GM bypasses any inherent "safety features" and has the potential to unleash unexpected side effects.

I agree that I don't want to be in the middle of an experiment - and I speak as one of those gluten-intolerant people. My immune system is in uproar: I can't eat gluten (therefore no takeaways and eating out is a russian roulette affair), poultry, lactose, and tuna that I know; there are other things that produce reactions but I haven't yet identified the triggers. I can't take any painkillers, and since I have developed rheumatoid arthritis that really is a pain in the neck, shoulders, wrists and feet! RA is an auto-immune disease that causes the immune system to attack the body's own cells.

/rant

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#39
In reply to #38

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/25/2012 10:25 AM

Here in the USA cotton farmers are required to surrender all harvested GMO seeds to the supplier.

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#40
In reply to #39

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/26/2012 4:35 AM

Hmmmm.....

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#41
In reply to #39

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/26/2012 4:58 AM

If the farmers are aware of this contractual requirement then what's wrong with that?

There are probably guaranteed yield provisions in the seed use that can only be guaranteed if the seeds come from the GMO seed suppliers.

Use the harvested seeds at your own risk I guess.

Same with rice here. Some farmers retain harvested seed (traditional practice) from their super crops to replant and get another good season but the yields drop off after the second go. The farmers are learning it is better to sell their whole harvest and buy guaranteed yield seeds. I'm not sure if they are GMO or just super hybrids.

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#42
In reply to #41

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/26/2012 6:39 AM

The point being made on the programmes I heard was that in Third World countries this effectively locked the farmers into trading with the GMO supplier forever, whatever happened to their crop or to the price of replacement seed. It was reported that ths was either bankrupting the farmers or turning them into de facto tenant farmers on their own land, without enough income to invest in the farm.

I appreciate (having seen it with flower and veg seeds in the garden) that if you collect seeds from F1 hybrids, they do not "breed true" i.e. do not carry the characteristics of the parents into all subsequent offspring.

I think we're (mea culpa) flogging two horses in this thread: GMO in principle and big business stranglehold on emerging/nascent economies. Big business stranglehold on established economies is de facto and would require ripping up our economies by the roots to remove...

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#43
In reply to #42

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/26/2012 11:53 PM

I heard was that in Third World countries this effectively locked the farmers into trading with the GMO supplier forever, whatever happened to their crop or to the price of replacement seed. It was reported that ths was either bankrupting the farmers or turning them into de facto tenant farmers on their own land, without enough income to invest in the farm.

Well I've seen in this third world country that farmers that DO use the GMO seeds are actually harvesting a surplus , fixing their houses up, installing solar panels, buying tractors, sending their kids to university, going on holidays.....while their neighbours who stubbornly cling to stone age farming practices with encouragement from paranoid western ludites, are still dying at 40 from ignorance and malnutrition.

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#45
In reply to #43

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/29/2012 3:50 PM

I heard this in one of the BBC's investigative programmes. The BBC is held to high standards of investigative research and lack of bias by its charter requirements, so I have a good deal of faith in what I hear there. I didn't hear it on some trashy pop-sci channel!

If the crops are working out well in your area, all well and good. The reports are that this is not the case all over the world.

I've had a look at the BBC website to see if the programme on South America, or information about it is available. My search terms aren't turning anything up and I've checked a number of likely programmes back issues. If I'd known I'd have to reference it, I'd have taken notes whilst listening. The African issue was discussed in programmes several years ago.

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#46
In reply to #45

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/29/2012 9:26 PM

Russia said a hard NO to GMO and Monsanto. On the surface for labrats getting cancer from it. But traditional russian paranoia kicked out NGO's and religious organizations, when it suited them so. So I presume, they did not like being locked in to a single and from them independent supplier. Their scientists do a credible work for over a century in traditional improvement of the crops. The monoculture did get no support from there, I would think.

By the way, I found unpleasant surprise.

I wanted to send English Rose a note, not exactly suitable to the main thread. Such a path disappeared sometime!?! And no alternate seem to exist.!?!

Is it too "expensive" to allow such minimal amenities!?!

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#36
In reply to #29

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/24/2012 11:02 AM

DuPont Nutrition & Health discusses how to feed the world

Feeding the world is at the top of the agenda for DuPont, and the European Food Venture Forum provided an ideal platform for the DuPont N&H business to demonstrate its commitment to this cause. This is almost everyday in my world. The entire company is focused on this. Personally I am of a mixed opinion on this for several reasons. First food is a saleable income generating commodity that is not market based. The cost of food is decided by commodity brokers not the actual producers so I really doubt we going to start given food away for free. Next, the population that is starving tends to be poor and uneducated and living in places where food will not grow in abundance and where they have already either poisoned the land or overpopulated the resource base. This does not even touch the human factors of greed, power and control. all three of which food is the ideal tool for controlling people. Lastly anyone remember the "Feed the World" crap the rock stars did back in the late 80's that resulted in the genocide of the Hutu's If I rememebr right. they sent all the food over. it was immediately confiscated by regional warlords who traded the food to China for AK47s and ammo and then proceeded to wipe out their rival tribe to the last man woman and child. Then let us not forget that we already produce more food than we can eat and would rather throw it out than give it away. I mean consider the cost of redistributing millions of tons of food from the US to say Africa. Who is going to pay for this on top of taking the write off for the loss of profit that giving it away caused? I agree feeding the world is a noble cause. I wonder what Don Quixote is doing lately?

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#34

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/23/2012 10:24 AM

Does GM corn make good whiskey?

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#35
In reply to #34

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/23/2012 12:41 PM

May be lumps in it.

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#44

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

09/29/2012 1:17 AM

One thing that greatly concerns me is the genetic uniformity of these engineered crops. One unanticipated blight and the crop is gone. All of it. Moreover, there is no saying that such a blight could not also be genetically engineered for this very purpose. Cyberwarfare has come up a lot lately in the press, but an enemy's computer viruses aren't the only game in town. Real, living viruses can be engineered, too.

Here in the U.S. we tend not to think of our crops as a potential military target but, by eliminating the genetic diversity in our crops, we are turning them into exactly that.

Unlike those in many other parts of the world, we've been very lucky. We have never experienced large-scale famines here in the U.S. as have others elsewhere, and so we tend not to think of famine as having strategic military value. Nevertheless, if History is any guide, crop destruction is, in fact, the oldest and by far the most tested practical weapon of mass destruction there is. Destroying an enemy's crops by fire or by other means is as old as the hills and, if one day we find ourselves starving to death because our crops are gone - for whatever reason - we can all thank the nice folks at Monsanto for making it inevitable possible.

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#47

Re: 2 Year Feeding Study on GMO Corn/Roundup Finds Cancer Risks

10/03/2012 11:10 PM

I have seen this with my dogs. It also causes cataracts. It's the Roundup or diquat they spray on the tassles to keep the corn from self pollinating.

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