QIs there animal DNA in GM foods? If so which ones? Please answer, I'm a vegetarian, and when I heard this I nearly got sick from the thought. Please answer. Thank you.

Is there animal DNA in GM foods? If so which ones? Please answer, I'm a vegetarian, and when I heard this I nearly got sick from the thought. Please answer. Thank you.

AExpert Answer

I am sorry that you were concerned.  There is certainly quite a bit of misinformation about GM crops on the Internet that is designed to mislead and scare consumers.  There are no commercial GM crops on the market that contain animal genes.

 

It should be noted that plant scientists who study the genomes of plants have estimated that about 60 percent of the genes present in plants have very similar copies in animals. This is not surprising, since all organisms use the same genetic toolbox. DNA from any source is made up of the same four basic nucleotide building blocks:­ adenine (A), cytosine (C), thymine (T) and guanine (G).  So DNA that comes from a plant or a microbe has the same four nucleotides as the DNA in animals. When any DNA is ingested, it is broken down into these nucleotides, which are further broken down and absorbed or excreted.  

You may want to read more detailed articles that provide more in-depth information related to your question:

 

Posted on February 2, 2018
Dr. Larry Gilbertson, PhD, Genomics Strategy Lead at Monsanto, explains how GMOs are “created” or made exactly, answering a lot of common questions about this process in this post. Watch as he prepares to create a GMO here.     Additionally, the below infographic details what a GMO is and the lifecycle it goes through to be developed.     Steve Savage, Consultant, Savage & Associates, explains what the future of GMOs may be like in this... Read More
Posted on February 2, 2018
A former response to a similar question answered by Dave Kovalic, Regulatory New Technology Lead at Monsanto, also provides information on scientific advancements and how they [Monsanto] affirm safety prior to targeted vector insertion.   “For context, it is important to recognize that random genome insertions have been naturally occurring in crops over the ~10,000-year history of agriculture.  In some crops, more than 90 percent of the genome consists of these... Read More
Posted on February 2, 2018
In terms of the science behind the technology to create GMOs, scientists have a much better understanding how a transgene is delivered and stably integrated into a chromosome (or genome). Many GMO products, such as Bt corn, were made using Agrobacterium cells to deliver useful trait genes into the plant cells. Scientists were able to dissect the different steps of this natural gene delivery system encoded by Agrobacterium. We now have a good understanding of the interactions between... Read More

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