An overview of the last 10 years of genetically engineered crop safety research
The following is an abstract and conclusion of a 2013 study in the journal Critical Reviews in Biotechnology that looks at 10 years worth of safety research in genetically modified food and crops.
The technology to produce genetically engineered (GE) plants is celebrating its 30th anniversary and one of the major achievements has been the development of GE crops. The safety of GE crops is crucial for their adoption and has been the object of intense research work often ignored in the public debate. We have reviewed the scientific literature on GE crop safety during the last 10 years, built a classified and manageable list of scientific papers, and analyzed the distribution and composition of the published literature. We selected original research papers, reviews, relevant opinions and reports addressing all the major issues that emerged in the debate on GE crops, trying to catch the scientific consensus that has matured since GE plants became widely cultivated worldwide. The scientific research conducted so far has not detected any significant hazards directly connected with the use of GE crops; however, the debate is still intense. An improvement in the efficacy of scientific communication could have a significant impact on the future of agricultural GE. Our collection of scientific records is available to researchers, communicators and teachers at all levels to help create an informed, balanced public perception on the important issue of GE use in agriculture.
The technology to produce GE plants is celebrating its 30th anniversary. It has brought about a dramatic increase in scientific production over the years leading to high impact findings either in basic research (such as RNAi-mediated gene silencing) and applied research (GE crops), but the adoption of GE plants in the agricultural system has raised issues about environmental and food/feed safety. We have reviewed the scientific literature on GE crop safety for the last 10 years that catches the scientific consensus matured since GE plants became widely cultivated worldwide, and we can conclude that the scientific research conducted so far has not detected any significant hazard directly connected with the use of GM crops. The analysis of the record list shows that the Biodiversity topic dominated, followed by Traceability and GE food/feed consumption, which contributed equally in terms of the number of records.
To read the entire study, please visit the Critical Reviews in Biotechnology website.