Expert response from Kurt Boudonck
Greenhouse Group Leader, BASF
Wednesday, 11/11/2015 13:56
For GM seed that is commercially grown by farmers the short answer is yes. The GM trait typically moves to the next generation. This is because a GM trait is simply a new gene (small piece of extra DNA) that was inserted into the plant’s DNA. The plant’s DNA, including the newly added GM gene, is present in all cells of the plant including reproductive structures such as flowers and pollen. So when plants reproduce and the GM pollen (male part) meets the GM pistil (female part), next generation GM seeds (called progeny seeds) are formed, and the trait is passed on.
However, there are some exceptions to this, for example in large scale hybrid GM canola seed production, where about 15 percent of the progeny is non-GM. And during the research phase of making a GM crop it doesn’t always pass to the next generation either.
How GMOs are Researched, Developed and Tested
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