Biotech Updates

Unreported GM Maize Field Trials in Italy Show Positive Results

November 16, 2007

Data from field trials conducted by the University of Milan and released in 2006 by the National Institute for Research on Food and Nutrition (INRAN), a government research institution in Italy, shows that genetically modified (GM) maize gave yields of 14.1 to 15.9 tons per hectare compared with conventional varieties which produced 11 tons of grain per hectare. The trials were conducted in Lombardy, a major maize-growing region in the northern part of Italy. Corn borer larvae were not found on GM maize crops during the field trials in Lombardy. In contrast, an average of 29 of these parasitic pests was found on each stalk of the conventional varieties, with more than one-third of them in the cobs. Hence, there was a dramatic increase in fumonisin levels in the conventional varieties.

AgbioWorld which reported these findings also noted that these research results were never published in a peer-reviewed journal although it is available online at the INRAN wesbite at

Media inquiries may be forwarded to Piero Morandini of the University of Milan at or Roberto Defez of the Istituto di Genetica e Biofisica at