Potentially dangerous new GMO gains US FDA approval to be fed to humans and animals – poor and hungry targeted. Report: Claire Robinson
US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) regulators have approved a new type of GM cotton, the seed of which is to be used for human and animal consumption. The cotton, developed by researchers at Texas A&M University, is being touted as a protein-rich way to feed the poor and hungry. However, the many risks of this GM food are being ignored.
The GM cotton is engineered to have lower than normal levels of a substance called gossypol in the seed, but normal levels in other parts of the plant. Gossypol is useful to the plant for resisting pests and diseases, but it is toxic for humans and animals (though less so to mature ruminants such as cows) to eat.
The new GM cotton was produced using a GM approach called RNAi, which is short for RNA interference. RNAi essentially results in the silencing of expression of a desired gene or genes. This particular application of RNAi-mediated gene silencing was intended to reduce production of gossypol in the seeds.