Debate on GM Wheat in Great BritainJune 1, 2012
A demonstration against the field trial of GM wheat by the organizers Take the Flour Back was prevented by the Harpenden, Hertfordshire, police last May 27. The GM wheat trial is being conducted by the scientists at Rothamsted Research Institute to determine the transgenes efficacy in controlling aphids.
The large cereal aphid Sitobion avenae has been wreaking havoc in conventionally grown wheat in the UK and can only be treated with broadband insecticides that are expensive, can cause the development of pesticide resistant colonies and affects non-target organisms. The aphids suck the plant juice and can also transmit viruses hence compounding the problem. GM wheat contains the gene for (E)-ß-farnesene which repels the aphids when they come in contact. Its natural enemy the Lady bug is attracted to the substance, thus the aphids become a defenseless prey.
The critics were concerned about allergenicity claims and cross-pollination of the transgenic wheat plants These issues were quickly countered by the pro-scientific lobby group, Sense About Science, to be not possible. No record of allergenicity has been recorded in the literature and wheat is a self-pollinating crop and cross pollination is miniscule.
In another news article, Mark Lynas, a member of the said pro-science group who once protested about GM trials commented that: "I think today is a turning point. Today is the first day that people have turned out to defend the scientific method and defend the age of reason from the ideologically bonkers wing of the environmental movement."
The original news in Dutch can be seen at http://www.biosicherheit.de/aktuell/1418.debatte-gentechnisch-veraenderter-weizen-grossbritannien.html. A related news article can be found at http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/world/2012/0528/1224316805992.html.
Biotech Updates is a weekly newsletter of ISAAA, a not-for-profit organization. It is distributed for free to over 22,000 subscribers worldwide to inform them about the key developments in biosciences, especially in biotechnology. Your support will help us in our mission to feed the world with knowledge. You can help by donating as little as $10.
See more articles:
News from Around the World
- Scientists Sequence the Tomato Genome
- FAO: End Hunger and Malnutrition to Achieve Sustainable Dev't
- DNA Discovery in Drought Resistant Crops
- Mexico Ratifies the Nagoya Protocol
- Trait Stacking for Biotech Crops: An Essential Consideration for Agbiotech Development
- IITA Project Saves Africa from Striga Infestation
- ICARDA, CIMMYT Build Partnership for Wheat Research
- African Heads of State and Governments Agree to Give Biotechnology a Try
- Time is Ticking for Some Crop's Wild Relatives
- It's in the Genes: Research Pinpoints How Plants Know When to Flower
- USDA Provides Funding to Cooperators for Pest and Disease Management and Disaster Prevention
- Rising CO2 Levels Affects Gene Flow in Wild and Domesticated Rice
- Iowa State University to Get More Staff to Create Biotech Research Powerhouse
- Glyphosate Tolerant Canola Receives Approval in Canada
- APEC: Biotech to Improve Food Security
- Seminar on Plant Genetic Transformation in Indonesia
- Rice Bowl Index Highlights Solutions for Food Security Challenges Across Asia-Pacific
- Chinese Ethnic Minority Gains Info on Agri-biotechnology
- Embargo on Bt Brinjal a Great Disservice to India Says Academician
- Seminar on Modern Biotech Informs Filipino Stakeholders
- Why Plants Follow the Sun
- Debate on GM Wheat in Great Britain
- Plants Could More Efficiently Use Light for Food Production
- Minister Announces £250M Strategic Investment in UK BioScience
- Effects of Cry1F on Army Worm's Predator
- Scientists Investigate Long-term Effects of Bt Cotton on Aphids
- Plastids Do Not Form Interconnected Networks
Beyond Crop Biotech
- New Cannabis Without the 'High'
- Pesticides and Bee Health: EFSA Reviews the Science
- Scientists Unveil Pathways for Biosynthesis of Noscapine
- SEAMEO-BIOTROP Provides Fellowship for National Training Courses in 2012
- Publication on "Environmental Safety of Biotech and Conventional IPM Technologies"
Read the latest:
- Biotech Updates (June 7, 2023)
- Gene Editing Supplement (May 31, 2023)
- Gene Drive Supplement (February 22, 2023)
Subscribe to BU: