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Posted On: Sunday, 3/16/2014 8:32 pm
A: The report you refer to is by Paz-y-Miño et al. (2007), published in the journal Genetics and Molecular Biology, a small Brazilian journal (impact factor 0.73, so not a well-recognized journal). César Paz-y-Miño has an OK publication record and studies a number of regional issues using his expertise. This report assesses "DNA damage" using what's called a "comet assay," an assay in which cells are placed into an agar matrix and subjected to an electric field. DNA is charged, so it moves to the... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Thursday, 4/24/2014 11:28 pm
A: I'm a scientist and educator, so it is really important for me that our public understands science and technology. It is hard to see a good technology that has been used with an amazing safety and efficacy record get trashed.  So that's why I dip my toe into the discussion. We don't "think they are safe"; when we look at the data, there is no evidence to the contrary after 17 years on the market.  I can't speak for others, but I see this technology as a great way to solve problems... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Friday, 5/09/2014 1:33 pm
A: I'm glad to answer your question as a scientist, but also as someone who is raising his niece. I'd never give her something dangerous, and in our house we absolutely do not worry about GM foods.  Your question implies a negative effect of the technology, much like that derived from anti-GM websites. The scientific answer is that there are absolutely no cases of any harm from this technology in 17 years of use. That's in small children and adults — no problems.  If you search the web... Continue Reading
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Posted On: Saturday, 3/15/2014 5:41 pm
A: First, there is no GM zucchini, but I'll be happy to chase a hypothetical scenario. The fruit is maternal tissue, meaning that every cell comes from the mother plant's tissues. The only "GMO" part would be the embryo and parts of the seed; potentially somewhere between half and all of the embryos would contain a transgene. I hope this helps.
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Posted On: Wednesday, 1/08/2014 8:17 pm
A: Both realize the need to produce more food with fewer inputs — to do more with less. We need more food and better-quality food, made with less water, less pesticide, less labor and less fuel, and with sensitivity to the environment. We need to help those in the developing world.  That's the good news. We are all on the same page.  Those against GMOs need to understand the science and how it is being stopped from helping solve the problems we all have identified. Solutions exist, but... Continue Reading