Friday, June 4, 2010

What we know about GMO

What we know about GMO
Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) may be considered a special category of exotic species. The underlying difference among all species is their genetic makeup.

Therefore, organism that have had their genome modified by humans could be considered exotic in relation to the original population.

The European Economic Community defines a GMO as “an organism in which the genetic material has been altered in a way that does not occur naturally by mating and/or natural recombination...”

A GMO, of course is an organism. The term “organism” is defined as “any biological entity capable of replication or of transferring genetic material.”

In addition to plants and animals, this definition covers micro-organism including parasites, bacteria and viruses.

Non-viable products derived from GMO’s, which do not present risks associated with replication or transfer of genetic material are not organism and thus, are not GMO’s.

Discussion of GMO’s developed markedly during the 1990s when it was proposed to use GMOs in various context in order to increase agricultural production,

The process of genetic modification (GM) refers to the transfer of DNA between species using laboratory techniques, and is sometimes referred to as biotechnology.

GM has been used especially with agricultural crops to increase resilience or insect attack. Proponent of GM gave claimed that modifying DNA may be enhance food productivity and consequently help overcome serious problems of poverty and nutritional insecurity, especially in rapidly developing countries such as India and China.

Proponents have also claimed GMOs will reduce the need for fertilizers and water, and expand the range of lands that can be used for agriculture, particularly increase affected by salt or poor soil fertility.

Such claims, however, have challenged by a variety of concerned scientist and activists in terms of potentially very serious impacts on ecosystems and the implications of GMOs for international trade and development.

Environmentalists have feared that GMOs may impact negatively on native flora and fauna via so-called “gene flow” or the transfer of GMO DNA via spread of pollen.

Similarly , GM crops that are herbicide or disease resistant may become persistent weeds of their seeds spread to unwanted locations.

Local biodiversity may also affected by the impacts of toxins within GMOs when they are seem as weeds.
What we know about GMO
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