December 10, 2009

Transgenic Organics?

Watch as the rationalizations for violating the simple ethics of the precautionary principle erodes into the organic industry. Surely we are brighter than this.

December 7, 2009

regulating the nanoelephant in the room

Whether you've transported them up into Pacific Coast glaciers on your moisture wicking nanosilver ski pants, or are unwittingly participating in nanoencapsulation studies on a populous scale...the consequences will be fodder for future thesis and peer review. We are the field trials.

“Nobody Told Me I was a Nano-Consumer:” How Nanotechnologies Might Challenge the Notion of Consumer Rights

"Regarding nanotechnologies and the consumer, a central paradox is the absence of a regulatory framework while more than 1,000 nano-enabled products are already available on the consumer markets. This represents a serious challenge for the consumer interest".

read it here

December 6, 2009

symbionts and gene transfer

Symbionts helps in the transfer of genes between organisms.

"Although common among bacteria, lateral gene transfer—the movement of genes between distantly related organisms—is thought to occur only rarely between bacteria and multicellular eukaryotes. However, the presence of endosymbionts, such as Wolbachia pipientis, within some eukaryotic germlines may facilitate bacterial gene transfers to eukaryotic host genomes".

Read Widespread Lateral Gene Transfer from Intracellular Bacteria to Multicellular Eukaryotes

transgenic dna persists in the food web.: Guelph research

This is some more evidence for what others (and here) have been saying for quite some time: gmo dna sequences transfer to other organisms.
In the case of this study, Monsanto's cp4 epsps genes moved on through the soil ecosystem to arthropods, nematodes, and earthworms. I wonder if they are round-up ready (the soil life) and if monsanto owns them now.

Detection of transgenic cp4 epsps genes in the soil food web .
Miranda M. Hart1, Jeff R. Powell1, Robert H. Gulden2, David J.
Levy-Booth3, Kari E. Dunfield4, K. Peter Pauls2, Clarence J. Swanton2,
John N. Klironomos1 and Jack T. Trevors.
University of Guelph

Abstract - The persistence and movement of transgenic DNA in
agricultural and natural systems is largely unknown. This movement poses
a threat of horizontal gene transfer and possible proliferation of
genetically modified DNA into the general environment. To assess the
persistence of transgenic DNA in a field of Roundup Ready
corn, we quantified the presence of the transgene for glyphosate
tolerance within a soil food web. Using quantitative real-time PCR, we
identified the cp4 epsps transgene in bulk soil microarthropods,
nematodes, macroarthropods and earthworms sampled within the corn
cropping system. We found evidence of the transgene at all dates and in
all animal groups. Transgenic DNA concentration in animal was
significantly higher than that of background soil, suggesting the
animals were feeding directly on transgenic plant material. It remains
to be tested whether this DNA was still within the plant residues,
present as free, extracellular DNA or had already undergone genetic
transformation into competent bacterial cells. These results are the
first to demonstrate the persistence of transgenic crop DNA residues
within a food web.


December 4, 2009

let them eat cottonseed cakes

Biotech scientists have worked for decades to produce a gossypol-free cotton plant by silencing the gene that produces a toxin, gossypol, throughout the plant and with little success as insects and diseases do not like gossypol either and are ravaged by them..

The breakthrough came as genetic engineers have managed to inhibit gossypol production in the seeds.


So the poor people can eat the fruits of industrial farming.

This as a land grab has been thieving through vast tracts of farmlands in Africa and Asia. Industrial crops for fuel and gadgets, clothes, food.

It is a blessing to have a bit of land to plant our food and not worry about the need to to eat stuff like cottonseed meal.

Genetic engineering turns 'Fabric of Our Lives' into edible cottonseed that may feed millions

December 2, 2009

they say its a wheat glut

LONDON: A sharp decline in wheat prices driven by a supply glut is set to lead to more of the grain being turned into motor fuel in the European Union.

according to a Reuter's story

whilst the descendants of the mother of wheat, face famine in Ethiopia due to drought and crop failures.