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GM crop enquiry launched by French government.

By     19th September 2012.

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The French government has launched an inquiry into the safety of genetically modified crops after a study suggested GM maize could cause cancer in rats.

GM crop enquiry launched by French government

Rats with tumors after they were fed a diet of genetically modified maize Photo: AFP
A research team from the University of Caen reported that rats fed a lifelong diet of a common strain of genetically modified corn developed breast tumours and severe damage to their liver and kidneys.

Although previous safety trials have established that the corn had no adverse effects on animals after 90 days, the trial is thought to be the first to examine its health impact over a longer scale.

But independent experts questioned the integrity of the new study, claiming the French team’s experiment was biased and accusing experts of going on a “statistical fishing trip”.

In Britain GM maize is not grown nor eaten directly by consumers, but hundreds of thousands of tons are imported each year for use in animal feed.

Chicken, beef and pork from animals fed on GM crops is sold in supermarkets without special labelling, but experts said there is no evidence that any risks would be passed on to humans through eating meat from GM-fed livestock.

The study examined 180 rats fed different amounts of a strain of weedkiller-resistant GM corn; water containing Roundup, the world’s bestselling weedkiller; and a combination of the two.

After two years, a normal lifespan for rats, between 50 and 80 per cent of all the female rats fed the corn or weedkiller developed at least one large tumour, compared with 30 per cent from a small control group.

Male rats in the treated groups were more likely to develop serious kidney and liver damage.

Dr Michael Antoniou, of King’s College London, who contributed to the project, said: “This is the most thorough research ever published into the health effects of GM food crops and the herbicide Roundup on rats. It shows an extraordinary number of tumours developing earlier and more aggressively – particularly in female animals.”

  1. November 22, 2012 at 7:04 am

    It is a good move for the French government to investigate about GMO crops. It’s high time to put a stop on GMO crops production.

  2. May 3, 2013 at 3:46 am

    I love reading through a post that can make people think.
    Also, many thanks for allowing me to comment!

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