CRISPR/Cas gene scissor applications cause changes in gene regulation
18 December 2020 / A new scientific publication shows that CRISPR/Cas gene scissor applications in animals unintentionally leave traces. The findings are not related to unintended changes in the DNA, which have often been described, but to gene regulation, i.e. epigenetics. The effects are heritable and may, for example, result in disruption of embryonic development.
Testbiotech urges the EU Commission to get active
17 December 2020 / Today the EU Parliament adopted by a large majority several resolutions proposed by the Greens/EFA Group against further EU market approvals of genetically engineered plants. Five applications were filed by Bayer (Monsanto) and Syngenta for maize and soybeans that are resistant to herbicides and/or produce insecticides.
Data from Monsanto revealed that Bt proteins expressed in genetically engineered (GE) plants are significantly more toxic than natural Bt toxins. It is more than 30 years ago since, in 1990, Monsanto data first showed that if mixed with plant material from, e.g. soybeans, cotton and maize, toxicity could be up to 20 times higher. This is due to enzymes naturally present in the tissues of many crop plants. These findings were never taken into account by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). It seems as if EFSA simply overlooked the relevant publications.
EU Parliament strongly criticises current practice of risk assessment
2 December 2020 / Several new applications filed for the import of genetically engineered (GE) plants are about to be approved. Five new applications were filed by Bayer and Syngenta for maize and soybeans that are resistant to herbicides and/or produce insecticides. Some of these applications will be discussed tomorrow in a committee with experts from the EU Member States. If there is no qualified majority for or against an authorisation in this vote, the Commission may decide on the applications.