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GM Crops & Food

Stuart J Smyth
New breeding techniques in plant agriculture exploded upon the scene about two years ago, in 2014. While these innovative plant breeding techniques, soon to be led by CRISPR/Cas9, initially appear to hold tremendous promise for plant breeding, if not a revolution for the industry, the question of how the products of these technologies will be regulated is rapidly becoming a key aspect of the technology's future potential. Regulation of innovative technologies and products has always lagged that of the science, but in the past decade, regulatory systems in many jurisdictions have become gridlocked as they try to regulate genetically modified (GM) crops...
November 18, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Alan McHughen
Regulatory policies governing the safety of genetic engineering (rDNA) and the resulting products (GMOs) have been contentious and divisive, especially in agricultural applications of the technologies. These tensions led to vastly different approaches to safety regulation in different jurisdictions, even though the intent of regulations-to assure public and environmental safety-are common worldwide, and even though the international scientific communities agree on the basic principles of risk assessment and risk management...
November 4, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Siddhesh B Ghag, Vinayak S Adki, Thumballi R Ganapathi, Vishwas A Bapat
Production of recombinant proteins is primarily established in cultures of mammalian, insect, and bacterial cells. Concurrently, concept of using plants to produce high-value pharmaceuticals such as vaccines, antibodies and dietary proteins have received worldwide attention. Newer technologies for plant transformation such as plastid engineering, agroinfiltration, magnifection and deconstructed viral vectors have been used to enhance protein production in plants along with the inherent advantage of speed, scale and cost of production in plant systems...
October 27, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Alemayehu Teressa Negawo, Linda Baranek, Hans-Jörg Jacobsen, Fathi Hassan
Transgenic pea lines transformed with the cry1Ac gene were characterized at molecular (PCR, RT-PCR, qRT-PCR and immunostrip assay) and functional levels (leaf paint and insect feeding bioassays). The results showed the presence, expression, inheritance and functionality of the introduced transgene at different progeny levels. Variation in the expression of the cry1Ac gene was observed among the different transgenic lines. In the insect bioassay studies using the larvae of Heliothis virescens, both larval survival and plant damage were highly affected on the different transgenic plants...
October 20, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Akhter Ali, Dil Bahadur Rahut, Muhammad Imtiaz
In Pakistan majority of the consumers do not have information about genetically modified (GM) foods. In developing countries particularly in Pakistan few studies have focused on consumers' acceptability about GM foods. Using comprehensive primary dataset collected from 320 consumers in 2013 from Pakistan, this study analyzes the determinants of consumers' acceptability of GM foods. The data was analyzed by employing the bivariate probit model and censored least absolute deviation (CLAD) models. The empirical results indicated that urban consumers are more aware of GM foods compared to rural consumers...
April 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Graham Brookes, Peter Barfoot
This paper updates previous assessments of important environmental impacts associated with using crop biotechnology in global agriculture. It focuses on the environmental impacts associated with changes in pesticide use and greenhouse gas emissions arising from the use of GM crops since their first widespread commercial use in the mid 1990s. The adoption of GM insect resistant and herbicide tolerant technology has reduced pesticide spraying by 581.4 million kg (-8.2%) and, as a result, decreased the environmental impact associated with herbicide and insecticide use on these crops (as measured by the indicator, the Environmental Impact Quotient [EIQ]) by18...
April 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Brandon J Fast, Maria P Galan, Ariane C Schafer
Soybean event DAS-444Ø6-6 is tolerant to the herbicides 2,4-D, glyphosate, and glufosinate. An investigation of potential unintended adverse compositional changes in a genetically modified crop is required to meet government regulatory requirements in various geographies. A study to meet these requirements in Brazil was completed demonstrating compositional equivalency between DAS-444Ø6-6 and non-transgenic soybean. This study supplements the extensive literature supporting transgenesis as less disruptive of crop composition compared with traditional breeding methods...
April 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Paige E Finkelstein
Billions of people worldwide are unable to meet their daily micro nutritional needs. Genetically modified (GM) foods, while initially developed to tolerate herbicides and resist disease and insects, have the potential to help alleviate this issue that is currently posing a serious public health concern. However, there is a negative public perception surrounding GM foods, calling for more research regarding the risks that GM foods could pose to the public, specifically on the topics of allergenicity and gene transfer...
February 18, 2016: GM Crops & Food
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January 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Graham Brookes, Peter Barfoot
This paper provides an economic assessment of the value of using genetically modified (GM) crop technology in agriculture at the farm level. It follows and updates earlier annual studies which examined economic impacts on yields, key costs of production, direct farm income and effects, and impacts on the production base of the 4 main crops of soybeans, corn, cotton and canola. The commercialisation of GM crops has continued to occur at a rapid rate since the mid 1990s, with important changes in both the overall level of adoption and impact occurring in 2014...
January 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Woldeyesus Sinebo, Karim Maredia
The regulation of genetically modified (GM) crops is a topical issue in agriculture and environment over the past 2 decades. The objective of this paper is to recount regulatory and adoption practices in some developing countries that have successfully adopted GM crops so that aspiring countries may draw useful lessons and best practices for their biosafatey regulatory regimes. The first 11 mega-GM crops growing countries each with an area of more than one million hectares in 2014 were examined. Only five out of the 11 countries had smooth and orderly adoption of these crops as per the regulatory requirement of each country...
January 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Ranjini Warrier, Hem Pande
In order to proactively identify emerging issues that may impact the risk assessment and risk management functions of the Indian biosafety regulatory system, the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change sought to understand the nature and diversity of genetically engineered crops that may move to product commercialization within the next 10 y. This paper describes the findings from a questionnaire designed to solicit information about public and private sector research and development (R&D) activities in plant biotechnology...
January 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Toru Nishizawa, Nobuyoshi Nakajima, Masanori Tamaoki, Mitsuko Aono, Akihiro Kubo, Hikaru Saji
Previously, we conducted a roadside survey to reveal the occurrence of genetically modified (GM) oilseed rape along a Japanese roadside (Route 51). In this study, we performed successive and thorough fixed-route monitoring in 5 sections along another road (Route 23). Oilseed rape plants were detected on both sides of the road in each section between autumn 2009 and winter 2013, which included 3 flowering seasons. In four sections, more plants were found on the side of the road leading from the Yokkaichi port than on the opposite side...
January 2, 2016: GM Crops & Food
Gary E Marchant, Yvonne A Stevens
The question of whether biotechnology regulation should be based on the process or the product has long been debated, with different jurisdictions adopting different approaches. The European Union has adopted a process-based approach, Canada has adopted a product-based approach, and the United States has implemented a hybrid system. With the recent proliferation of new methods of genetic modification, such as gene editing, process-based regulatory systems, which are premised on a binary system of transgenic and conventional approaches, will become increasingly obsolete and unsustainable...
2015: GM Crops & Food
Huw D Jones
We are witnessing the timely convergence of several technologies that together will have significant impact on research, human health and in animal and plant breeding. The exponential increase in genome and expressed sequence data, the ability to compile, analyze and mine these data via sophisticated bioinformatics procedures on high-powered computers, and developments in various molecular and in-vitro cellular techniques combine to underpin novel developments in research and commercial biotechnology. Arguably the most important of these is genome editing which encompasses a suite of site directed nucleases (SDN) that can be designed to cut, or otherwise modify predetermined DNA sequences in the genome and result in targeted insertions, deletions, or other changes for genetic improvement...
2015: GM Crops & Food
Naglaa A Abdallah, Channapatna S Prakash, Alan G McHughen
Genome or gene editing includes several new techniques to help scientists precisely modify genome sequences. The techniques also enables us to alter the regulation of gene expression patterns in a pre-determined region and facilitates novel insights into the functional genomics of an organism. Emergence of genome editing has brought considerable excitement especially among agricultural scientists because of its simplicity, precision and power as it offers new opportunities to develop improved crop varieties with clear-cut addition of valuable traits or removal of undesirable traits...
2015: GM Crops & Food
Vincent A Brazelton, Scott Zarecor, David A Wright, Yuan Wang, Jie Liu, Keting Chen, Bing Yang, Carolyn J Lawrence-Dill
Targeted genome editing is now possible in nearly any organism and is widely acknowledged as a biotech game-changer. Among available gene editing techniques, the CRISPR-Cas9 system is the current favorite because it has been shown to work in many species, does not necessarily result in the addition of foreign DNA at the target site, and follows a set of simple design rules for target selection. Use of the CRISPR-Cas9 system is facilitated by the availability of an array of CRISPR design tools that vary in design specifications and parameter choices, available genomes, graphical visualization, and downstream analysis functionality...
2015: GM Crops & Food
Drew L Kershen
In May 2014, a New Zealand court rendered the first judicial opinion in the world about the legal classification of gene-editing techniques. The court ruled that ZFN-1 and TALEs are techniques of genetic modification and thus within the New Zealand statute and regulations governing genetically modified organisms. This article explains the facts of this legal matter, the reasoning of the court, and provides commentary about the implications of this decision for New Zealand and other jurisdictions around the world...
2015: GM Crops & Food
Agustina I Whelan, Martin A Lema
"New Breeding Techniques" (NBTs) are a group of recent innovations in plant breeding using molecular biology tools. It is becoming evident that NBTs can introduce advantageous traits for agriculture that could be commercially available very soon However, there is still a need of clarifying its regulatory status, particularly in regards to worldwide regulations on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). This article reviews the meaning of the NBTs concept, performs an overall regulatory analysis of these technologies and reports the first regulation in the world that is applied to these technologies, which was issued by the Argentine Government...
2015: GM Crops & Food
Jean-Michel Michno, Xiaobo Wang, Junqi Liu, Shaun J Curtin, Thomas Jy Kono, Robert M Stupar
The CRISPR/Cas9 system is rapidly becoming the reagent of choice for targeted mutagenesis and gene editing in crop species. There are currently intense research efforts in the crop sciences to identify efficient CRISPR/Cas9 platforms to carry out targeted mutagenesis and gene editing projects. These efforts typically result in the incremental tweaking of various platform components including the identification of crop-specific promoters and terminators for optimal expression of the Cas9 enzyme and identification of promoters for expression of the CRISPR guide RNA...
2015: GM Crops & Food
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