Wayne Parrott

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Wayne Parrott

Professor, Crop Breeding and Genetics, University of Georgia

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Posted on December 7, 2015
Response from Wayne Parrott, Professor, Crop Breeding and Genetics, University of Georgia • April 1, 2016
Pesticides such as herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides vary in the amount of time they break down in the environment by the specific pesticide, the rate applied, and environmental conditions. We measure how long pesticides persist in the environment by a measure called half-life or how long it takes the original material to be reduced by 50%. Under most situations we would encounter in an agricultural setting, a pesticide half-life can range from a few hours to 4-5 years. Most pesticides... Read More
Posted on October 23, 2015
Response from Wayne Parrott, Professor, Crop Breeding and Genetics, University of Georgia • November 17, 2015
Bt is a protein derived from soil-dwelling bacteria. Its use is widespread in both organic agriculture, and genetically engineered agriculture, as it presents many advantages over the use of traditional chemical-based insecticides. Among these advantages is the fact any given type of Bt protein only targets a very limited group of closely related insects, and is harmless to everything else.   The particular report cited in the question is about a 2007 study that claimed that... Read More
Posted on July 30, 2015
Response from Wayne Parrott, Professor, Crop Breeding and Genetics, University of Georgia • October 9, 2015
The short answer is no there are no health effects, and yes, there are tests.   For the long answer, it first helps to define what is meant by ‘promoter.’ Genes in general have three parts to them.  The promoter is the first part of the gene, and is equivalent to a switchbox that determines when and where that gene will be making its protein.  The second, or middle part, is the coding sequence, which is the business part of a gene—and in most genes, is... Read More
Posted on November 26, 2014
Response from Wayne Parrott, Professor, Crop Breeding and Genetics, University of Georgia • June 5, 2015
Thank you for your question, which alludes to species integrity and its implications. There is no doubt that until very recently, each species was viewed as genetically unique, or exhibiting "species autonomy or sovereignty in life," as you describe it. However, today's extensive genome sequencing has shown this not to be the case, and gene transfer between species is far more common and extensive than previously thought. For example, all studied crop genomes have DNA from... Read More
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