It is possible to order publications by filling in the
The Forestry Wood Chain: The impact of EU research (1998-2004) Eur Code
Rural Development: The impact of EU research (1998-2004) Eur Code 21331
Nap, J.P., Atanassov, A., & Stiekema, W.J. (2004)
Genomics for Biosafety in Plant Biotechnology 359 NATO, IS: 1 58603
432 4, pp 256
a chapter in this volume:
Ammann, K. (2004),
How To Learn About Risk Assessment For Novel Crops Based On Future Genomics
Research, Borovets, Sofia, Bulgaria NATO, NATO Advanced Research Workshop
on "Genomics for Biosafety in Plant Biotechnology: New Challenges" (eds
J. Nap & A. Atanassov)
IOBC/wprs Working Group on ‘GMOs in Integrated Plant Production’
Ecological Impact of Genetically Modified Organisms
June 1-3, 2005, Lleida, Spain website
The proceedings of the 8th International Symposium on the
Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms have been released. – See separate
announcement on this page.
Energy for Life - European Energy Strategy for the 21st
22-24 May 2005
http://europa.eu.int/comm/research/environment/index_en.htm - new site
EUROAGRI Citizens Conference
Brussels, Belgium, 3-4 February 2005
Under the slogan 'Science for Society - Science with Society', this conference
will explore ways of adapting the knowledge base for the optimal functioning
of the food-health-agriculture triangle. It seeks to demonstrate that society
needs to be engaged in order to strike a balance between the management
of rural areas, food production, nutrition and human health. It will bring
together stakeholders from the agri-food industry, farmers, scientists,
representatives of concerned civil society organizations and policy-makers.
> Contact -
First annual congress of the QualityLowInputFood EU funded Integrated
January 6 - 9 2005, Newcastle, UK
The international congress on Organic Farming, Food Quality and Human
Health was held January 6 - 9 2005 at Newcastle, UK. The conference explored
the neglected relationship between public health and the way we farm. Distinguished
speakers from research institutions throughout Europe presented new research
into how methods of production influence the levels of harmful pathogens
and beneficial nutrients in our food. Policy makers debated how the relatively
small amounts of public funds invested in agriculture could be used to promote
positive health and help control the huge sums consumed by health care budgets.
Farmers, growers, processors and academics shared their insights into how
methods of husbandry, feeding and fertility management could be used to
improve crop and livestock health and enhance the nutritional profile of
Speech of Mr. Janez POTOCNIK, European Commissioner for Science and Research,
The importance of research into organic and low-input food production, Newcastle,
07 January 2005- Entire Programme
Integrating safety and nutrition research along the food chain: the
new challenge, Lille, 27-29 October 2004 Intermediate report of the parallel
EUROAGRI Citizens Conference - Brussels, Belgium, 3-4 February 2005
The Identification Committee convened by the European Commission for
Science and Research will meet to recommend the composition of the governing
body of a future European Research Council. The establishment of the Research
Council will be included in the proposal for a Seventh Framework Programme
for Research and Development that the Commission will present in April 2005.
The Council is expected to focus on basic investigator-driven research
in support of future innovation and economic growth. The focus will be on
scientific excellence identified by fellow scientists, rather than the Commission.
For more information, visit
Nanotechnology and Medicine: Projects in FP6:
- Using nature as model for new nanotechnology-based processes (STREP
- Nanotechnology-based targeted drug delivery (IP - zweistufig)
- Mastering "Industrial Biotechnology" - Environmental Technology
for sustainable production of added value products (IP - zweistufig)
- Multi-functional technical textiles for construction, medical application
and protective clothing - (IP dedicated to SMEs - zweistufig)
- Biomaterials technologies for implants (IP dedicated to SMEs -zweistufig)
More information from DI Gerald Kern
Abteilung Industrielle Technologien und Verkehr
FFG - Oesterreichische Forschungsfoerderungsgesellschaft mbH,
Bereich Internationale Forschungs- und Technologiekooperation
1220 Wien, Donau-City-Straße 1
Task Force on Science, Technology and Innovation of the United Nations
Millennium Project commissioned by Secretary-General Kofi Annan prepared
a report titled Innovation: Applying Knowledge in Development
It outlines key areas for urgent national and international policy action
to accelerate substantive economic and social progress in developing countries,
even within the next five years. Access the report at
Science and Society Forum 2005
Brussels, 9-11 March 2005
Mirror events: Programme information for events in Italy and Austria.
Research Ethics Committees in Europe: facing the future together
Brussels, Belgium - 27-28 January 2005
- Information on the workshops is now available
European Group on Life Sciences (EGLS)
Brochure: "European Group on Life Sciences" (3rd edition, Dec. 2004)
Workshop report: Future Challenges for Life Sciences Research, Brussels,
28 Sept. 2004
EGLS statements: Conclusions of the European Group of Life Sciences (EGLS)
at the termination of its mandate (2000-2004)
Nutra Ingredients, January 10, 2005
Brussels addresses the issue of consumer cynicism and fear of agricultural
biotechnology in European citizens, setting up a thematic network on the
safety risk assessment of genetically modified food crops, the Entransfood
project, in order to stimulate the debate.
Funded under the Fifth Framework Programme (FP5), Entransfood sought
to identify prerequisites for introducing agricultural biotechnology products
in a way that is largely acceptable to European society. The project consortium,
consisting of 65 partners from 13 different European countries, including
representatives from academia, regulatory agencies, food manufacturers,
retailers and consumer groups.
The project noted that process-based labelling of all foods containing
GM crops is a necessity in order to dispel the fears of EU citizens, but
recognised that difficulties are unavoidable in implementing the EU's labelling
requirements. They quote the example that it will be a challenge to achieve
international agreement on standards for the labelling and traceability
of foods originating from or containing GM crops across countries and even
On the subject of detection of 'unintended effects and gene transfer,'
CORDIS writes that Entransfood emphasised there is no indication that
'unintended effects are more likely to occur in GM foods or that there is
any inherent risk in the transfer of DNA between organisms, since DNA is
It did, however, call for further development and validation of profiling
methods before they are used in routine risk assessment. The project also
recommends that the use of bacterial DNA in elaborating GM plants should
be kept to a minimum in order to reduce the risk of gene transfer to the
microbial population in the gut. Finally, the EU group recommended the creation
of an evaluation and discussion platform combining a range of diverse perspectives
on new food technology to formalise public engagement and consultation in
the GM debate.
Reuters, January 18, 2005
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) will assess the safety of two
GMO maize varieties whose manufacturers have requested cultivation as a
use when they applied for an EU-wide authorisation, officials said on Monday.
The two products are Bt-11 sweet maize, marketed by Switzerland's Syngenta,
and 1507 maize, jointly made by Pioneer Hi-Bred International -- a subsidiary
of DuPont Co -- and Dow AgroSciences unit Mycogen Seeds.
EFSA scientists had been due to give their opinion last September on
the two types of maize, modified to resist field insects such as the European
corn borer, but have asked for more data.
"The clock is stopped when we send out the request for more information
-- but we don't know how long we have to wait to get it. Then we have 90
days (to evaluate)," an EFSA official said.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/4185335.stm GM beet 'can benefit
environment' - BBC News, By Alex Kirby, Jan 19, 2005 Some genetically-modified
crops can be managed in a way that is beneficial to wildlife, a UK research
team believes. Their work, published by the Royal Society, says there is
"conclusive evidence" of benefits to wildlife from GM sugar beet crops.
The researchers are from Broom's Barn Research Station, part of Rothamsted
Research, which specialises in the study of sugar beet.
To help wildlife in spring, the researchers say, they improved the timing
of herbicide application to maximise crop yields and the benefits from leaving
weeds between crop rows.
For the more important autumn environmental benefits (weed seeds for
bird food and for recharging weed seed banks), they say they developed a
system giving maximum crop yield and increased weed seed availability (up
to 16-fold). This is by comparison with previous GM or conventional management
systems tested in the government's recent Farm Scale Evaluation (FSE) trials.
The team says: "The new system is extremely simple: compared to the previous
GM management system, it involves applying the first spray fairly early
and omitting the second spray." The researchers say their new crop management
approaches "could resolve legitimate concerns about indirect environmental
effects of GM sugar beet on weeds, insects and birds". Dr John Pidgeon,
director of Broom's Barn, told the BBC: "We're scientists, and we go by
the evidence. We think this is all about how you manage the crops, not whether
they're genetically modified or not.
German liability law regarding transgenic agriculture-analysis.
Italian parliament approved the planting of genetically modified (GM)
crops on January 25, 2005. "We sought to guarantee freedom of choice for
Italian producers, while heading off the risk of diffuse and uncontrolled
contamination by GM (organisms)," said Agriculture Minister Gianni Alemanno
in an ANSA news service release. The approval stressed that safeguards needed
to be in place to prevent any possible contamination of traditional crops.
It will be up to each of Italy’s regions to set the detailed rules, although
most of them want to remain GM free.
The link is in Hungarian. Below a short unofficial translation of the
main points : "The Minister of Agriculture... bans the manufacture, use,
sale, and import of the seed hybrids derived from the Mon810 event on the
whole territory of Hungary from the 20th January 2005. The ban
does not apply to the use of Mon810 in food and feed industry, and the repacking
and transporting of Mon810 seeds through the country, when its secured that
the corn does not get out into the environment. It is also forbidden to
plant any corn seeds with Mon810 event." The official decision of the Hungarian
government can be found on :
One of the great pest protection experts of the Hungarian Academy [of]
Sciences, Professor Bela Darvas, commented on the decision as such:
This decision of the government was highly appropriate in view of the
risk analysis of MON 81O. This GM maize has been created to protect the
maize plant against the European corn borer. However, only the southern
part of the country is affected by this pest and even then this only occurs
once in every ten years. However, even when it occurs its effects are slight
and it is more appropriate, less costly and more effective
to treat the maize with conventional pesticide when this happens.
Moreover, the Bt maize can cross-pollinate with other non-GM maize within
a 5OO m circle and about a third of these will be contaminated with the
Bt toxin in the first year and accordingly within a few years all the non-GM
maize will lose its identity. Hungary has no law that could ensure the purity
of the organically or even conventionally grown maize in the vicinity of
GM maize cultivation and there are no proper and official tests to prove
or disprove this contamination. When the GM maize sheds its pollen protected
species of butterflies at the border of the maize field living on the nettles
will be affected. One hectare of GM maize produces a thousand times more
Bt toxin than it would be lawfully permitted in any country of the world.
This Bt toxin will be transferred into the soil and about 8% of it will
still be measurable as active toxin after 11 months with totally unknown
but potentially harmful effects on soil bacteria. Also, pests very quickly
become resistant to Bt toxin. This can already be measured in the
third generation of the pest and Bt toxin loses its effect on affected species
by the tenth generation. Moreover, there are no acceptable scientific results
that would exclude the possibility of the harmful effects of Bt toxins on
IMPACT OF SELECTED TRANSGENIC CROPS IN HUNGARY ESTIMATED
Dr. Matty Demont and colleagues of the Center for Agricultural and Food
Economics, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium, estimate the “Potential
Impact of Biotechnology in Eastern Europe: Transgenic Maize, Sugar Beet,
and Oilseed Rape in Hungary.” Their approximations are based on hypothetical
planting of transgenic maize, sugar beet, and oilseed rape in the agricultural
season of 2003, in areas of 1,150,000 ha, 53,000 ha, and 71,000 ha, respectively.
Two common pests of maize, the European corn borer (Ostrinia nubilalis
Hübner) and Western corn rootworm (Diabrotica virgifera virgifera LeConte),
were both considered in the study. The adoption of Bt maize resistant to
the European corn borer, researchers found, could save the Hungarian farmer
19 euros/ha on average, taking into account a seed price premium of 6 euros/ha,
or 10% of the actual seed cost. Bt maize resistant to the Western corn rootworm,
on the other hand, could also save the Hungarian farmer 46 euros/ha on average,
with a seed price premium of 25 euros/ha, or 40% of the actual seed cost.
The introduction of herbicide tolerant maize, sugar beet and oilseed
rape could save the Hungarian farmer 22, 81, and 20 euros/ha, respectively.
The model predicts seed price premiums of respectively 8, 81, and 12 euros/ha
and early adoption rates in 2003 of 40%, 38%, and 35%.
The full study is available at:
India plans national stem cell initiative
Increasing funding and promoting collaborations are among the items included
in a national plan to boost stem cell research being drafted in India.
Chinese medicine set for protection
Authorities in China have launched a programme to protect traditional medicine
from commercial exploitation by foreign companies.
Funding boost for basic science in China
China plans to more than double its spending on basic science research in
a bid to compete with more developed countries.
Traditional medicine 'threatens China's biodiversity'
Chinese scientists say the rise in demand for traditional medicines is a
growing threat to the country's wealth of wild plants.
Government hopes to develop GM rice for saline soil
BANGKOK, Jan 17 (TNA) - The government hopes to solve bitter land disputes
between prawn farmers and rice farmers by developing genetically modified
rice strains capable of being grown in saline soil, the director-general
of the Land Development Department revealed today.
"If we could use salt water for cultivation, the benefits to the nation
would be enormous", said Mr. Ard Somrang, adding that the department would
work with scientists from all agencies concerned with the genetic modification
of crops in order to develop the new rice strains.
Although the commercial cultivation of GM crops is currently illegal
in Thailand, Mr. Ard dismissed concerns over their safety, and urged the
public to accept them.
FAO and other organisations
FAO Media Release January 27, 2005. via Agnet
Rome - A consultation of experts convened at the UN Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO), recommended that any responsible deployment of Genetically
Modified (GM) crops needs to comprise the whole technology development process,
from the pre-release risk assessment, to biosafety considerations and post
A benchmark document on the needs and present status of capacity building
in biosafety of GM crops in Asia by A.Varma for the Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) says that participating countries vary greatly in their
capacities related to GMO biosafety, and that most require considerable
efforts to build up capacity for regulating GMOs. See the document at
The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), which has consultative NGO status
with the United Nations, has decided to co-sponsor, along with the Economic
and Social Council of the UN (ECOSOC), an all day conference to examine
all sides of this hot issue. Ambassador Aminu Wali, the Permanent Representative
to the U.N. from Nigeria has agreed to host this important event. The conference
will be part of a 2-day celebration of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Federal
On Monday, January 17, 2005 we will honor Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
and father of the "Green Revolution", Dr. Norman Borlaug, at our annual
King Holiday Ambassadorial Reception & Awards Dinner at the New York Hilton
The World Conference will be held on Tuesday, January 18, 2005 at the United
Nations Headquarters, in New York.
Full program of the biotech conference at
The Steering Committee of the initiative "Public Research & Regulation",
which aims to offer a forum for the public research sector to be involved
in the Meetings of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and
related meetings, is pleased to inform you that the initiative continues
to receive massive support since its initiation last Summer. Much has happened
since that time and the information paper at
provides an update. Further updates can be found on
Phase 2 of this initiative will - subject to the availability of sufficient
funds - provide an opportunity to public sector scientists to participate
in the second Meeting of the Parties to the Biosafety Protocol (MOP2: May
30 - June 3, Montreal, Canada). To ensure that scientists can make optimal
use of participation in MOP2, an introductory seminar will be held on 3-4
March, at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, St-Louis, USA. Details
can be found in the information paper.
The Steering Committee,
Kim Meulenbroeks Public Research and Regulation Project Assistant
Oude Delft 60
2611 CD Delft
Tel: +31-15-212-7800, Fax: +31-15-212-7111
The XIIIth session of the Molecular Biology International
Seminar will cover the most recent developments and applications of molecular
biology tools as recent major players on the analytical scene. They have
proved their usefulness through various applications in sectors such as
food authenticity, the traceability of food and feed supply chains, food
safety, allergen detection, GMOs.
GM boom 'could spell economic growth for poor nations'
A review of the global state of agricultural biotechnology says that developing
countries are playing a leading role in the sector's growth.
Joel Cohen: “Poorer nations turn to publicly developed GM crops” January
2005 issue of Nature Biotechnology. It says “GM crops are often framed as
the products of multinational corporations, but in poorer nations it is
public research that is vibrant and attempting their development,” A .pdf
of the full article is available at
“Plants and Intellectual Property: An International Appraisal,” an article
by Dr. Bonwoo Koo and colleagues, published in the November1 19, 2004 issue
of Science. Developments in intellectual property (IP) have raised concerns
about IP’s implications in food production and animal health, especially
throughout the developing world. These same developments, however, are made
more in developed countries, and little attention is given to developing
nations. Read the enhanced article online at
NEWS IN SCIENCE
The repair of double-strand breaks in plants: mechanisms and consequences
for genome evolution. J. Exp. Bot., 56, 409, pp 1-14
more about the same topic:
Thro, A., Parrott, W., Udall, J., & Beavis, W. (2004),
Genomics and Plant Breeding: the Experience of the Initiative for Future
Agricultural and Food Systems, Crop Science, Genomics and Plant Breeding:
the Experience of the Initiative for Future Agricultural and Food Systems
a chapter in this summary report
Nelson, R.J., Naylor, R.L., & Jahn, M.M. (2004)
The role of genomics research in improvement of "orphan" crops. Crop Science,
44, 6, pp 1901-1904
<Go to ISI>://000225153000006
Strauss, S.H. (2003) Genetic technologies - Genomics, genetic engineering,
and domestication of crops. Science, 300, 5616, pp 61-62 <Go to ISI>://000181988900023
VandenBosch, K.A. & Stacey, G. (2003) Summaries of legume genomics projects
from around the globe. Community resources for crops and models. Plant Physiology,
131, 3, pp 840-865 <Go to ISI>://000185076100002 or
VandenBosch, K.A. & Stacey, G. (2003) Summaries of legume genomics projects
from around the globe. Community resources for crops and models. Plant Physiology,
131, 3, pp 840-865 <Go to ISI>://000185076100002 or
Allen Van Deynze et al (Seed Biotechnology Center of the University of
California, Davis): “Crop biotechnology: Feeds for livestock” For the full
Dmitry Dorokhov of the Centre of Bioengineering of the Russian Academy
of Sciences evaluated the possibility of outcrossing of genetically modified
(GM) Roundup Ready Soybeans 40-3-2 with wild soybean species in the Russian
federation. A total of 215 plants representing 40 wild soybean populations
and 2 cultivated soybean varieties were used in the study. To test potential
cross ability of GM soybean with the local species in both the field and
the greenhouse, Dorokhov's team tried to pollinate wild soybeans with GM
pollen. No herbicide-resistant soy was found in two subsequent growing seasons,
and transgenic DNA was found only in the first, but not in succeeding generations,
leading to the conclusion that any out crossing would be relatively rare,
or with a frequency below the sensitivity of the experiment. The report
may be downloaded at http://www.isaaa.org/kc.
Nematode control: Wheat plants can be destroyed
by the soil nematode Heterodera avenae without protection by the Cre genes.
Cre-3, in particular, has been incorporated into several wheat varieties
lacking nematode resistance; these transgenic plants have already been distributed
Identifying wheat carrying the Cre-3 gene is undertaken by marker-assisted
selection (MAS), using Cre3spf/2. The process, however, cannot distinguish
between plants homozygous for Cre-3 and those heterozygous for it. MAS,
moreover, is costly.
E.M. Martin and colleagues of Primary Industries Research in Victoria
Australia, however, recently reported the “Identification of microsatellite
markers associated with the cereal cyst nematode resistance gene Cre-3 in
wheat.” Their findings are published in the Australian Journal of Agricultural
By mapping genes closest to Cre-3, Martin’s
By mapping genes closest to Cre-3, Martin’s research team found a microsatellite
marker, designated as Xgwn301. Tests have shown that the association between
marker and gene is maintained through different stages of introgression,
and is not influenced by the presence of other Cre genes. This is important
when considering the incorporation of more than one resistance gene into
adapted wheat varieties, and, since Xgwn301 is specific for Cre-3, the marker
may help overcome the challenge of pyramiding Cre genes.
Download the article at
SORGHUM DNA SEQUENCES DONATED TO GENBANK
Orion Genomics, a Second Code biotechnology company, recently donated
all of its proprietary gene-enriched DNA sequences from the sorghum plant
to the public domain. The sequences are available at Genbank, of the National
Center for Biotechnology Information, a division of the National Library
of Medicine (NLM) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Orion's collection
of 500,000 gene-rich sequences and more than 20,000 different gene sequences
derived from its sequencing projects provide the first in-depth look at
sorghum's gene complement. Access the press release at
DATABASE ON PLANT BIOTECH PROJECTS
PlantBiotech Projects is a new database of transgenic plants with worldwide
coverage of all major sectors of plant biotechnology. Launched in
November 2004, the database contains information on genetically engineered
plants in the agricultural biotechnology sector and consists of four modules;
input traits, crop production, quality traits and plants as factories.
The data profiles include products currently in research, as well as launched
For more information, please contact Ms Rebecca Drake, Editor, PlantBiotechProjects
Sarah L Bates, Jian-Zhou Zhao, Richard T Roush &
Anthony M Shelton:, Insect Resistance Management In GM Crops: Past,
Present and Future Nature Biotechnology 23, 57 - 62 (2005)
Abstract: Transgenic plants expressing insecticidal proteins from the
bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) were first commercialized in 1996
amid concern from some scientists, regulators and environmentalists that
the widespread use of Bt crops would inevitably lead to resistance and the
loss of a 'public good,' specifically, the susceptibility of insect pests
to Bt proteins. Eight years later, Bt corn and cotton have been grown on
a cumulative area >80 million ha worldwide.
Despite dire predictions to the contrary, resistance to a Bt crop has
yet to be documented, suggesting that resistance management strategies have
been effective thus far. However, current strategies to delay resistance
remain far from ideal. Eight years without resistance provides a timely
opportunity for researchers, regulators and industry to reassess the risk
of resistance and the most effective strategies to preserve Bt and other
novel insect-resistant crops in development.
Selective "precautionary principle"
Another herbicide tolerant crop has been quietly marketed in the US with
no comment at all from environmental organisations. This crop is sunflowers.
Herbicide tolerant sunflowers have been grown for two years now in the US
with some success yet there has been no mobilisation of activists.
The centre of diversity for sunflowers is North America. Indeed, sunflowers
are often grown in localities close to their progenitor wild sunflowers
and close relatives. Sunflowers have modest rates of outcrossing and pollen
flow between cultivated plants feral plants and wild sunflowers occurs readily.
Sunflowers can also cross with some close relatives, several of which
are rare or endangered.
The Clearfield sunflowers are tolerant to the herbicide Beyond. The active
ingredient in Beyond is imazmox, an imidazolinone herbicide. Imazamox can
persist in the soil, particularly in acid soils. Some herbicide labels have
recommendations that susceptible crops should not be grown for 21 months
after using the herbicide. In addition, herbicide resistance to the imidazolinone
herbicides occurs rapidly, often with 4 or 5 uses of herbicide. This will
then lead to an increase in herbicide use.
Environmental dangers of GM herbicide tolerant crops have been many times
used as a reason for them to be banned. These include, according to "activists",
cross-breeding with wild relatives, causing extinction of wild relatives
through gene flow, genetic contamination of non-GM crops, using more herbicide,
invasion of the environment and the creation of super weeds. Yet there have
been no attempts to create legislation to ban the cultivation of herbicide
tolerant sunflowers, no armies of boiler-suited activists in gas masks pulling
up sunflower seeds, and no media pressure to frighten people about eating
sunflowers and products from sunflowers. In fact there has not been a whimper
from any environmental organisation. What has happened? How did this crop
introduction get under their radar?
The answer is simple. The herbicide tolerant sunflowers were created
through conventional breeding techniques by crossing the herbicide resistance
gene in from a weed that had evolved resistance following herbicide use.
You can read the story about how it was bred at
Jeffrey L. Fox, Nature Biotechnology, January 2005, v23, p6.
Reprinted in Agbioview with the permission of the editor. 'Reports rejects
GM import on sociocultural grounds while government passes law to regulate
them. Farmers in Mexico should carry on using traditional corn, instead
of its genetically modified version, for socio-cultural reasons, a new report
Jonathan Birchall, The Australian, January 8, 2005
Monsanto is to pay $US1.5 million ($2 million) in penalties to the US Government
over a bribe paid in Indonesia in a bid to bypass controls on the screening
of new genetically modified cotton crops. According to a criminal complaint
by the Department of Justice, the agrichemical company paid $US50,000 to
an unnamed senior Indonesian environmental official in 2002, in an unsuccessful
attempt to amend or repeal the requirement for the environmental impact
statement for new crop varieties.
Muslim states urged to back therapeutic cloning
The Muslim world's first proposed code of medical and health ethics would
approve human cloning for therapeutic but not reproductive purposes.
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 2005 16:17:27 -0600
From: "Dr. Tom DeGregori" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: BBC - Dioxin Found in Organic Eggs from Free-range Chickens
Previous research elsewhere in Europe (Denmark) has found that 100% of
the meat from free-range organic chickens was contaminated with Campylobacter
jejeuni compared to 30% for those for conventionally grown chickens. In
this case, proper preparation is required for any chicken dinner and cooking
and careful handling can solve the problem. To the extent that the dioxin
in the chickens is harmful, there is nothing that one can do to reduce the
contamination. As far as one is concerned with food safety from microbial
contamination, "free-range" is not the way to raise chickens as they are
exposed to rats and other outdoor disease vectors. Pity that some people
are paying more for a product that has greater contamination by their standards
while thinking that it is a safer and more nutritious ALTERNATIVE. Pity!
- Tech Central Station, By Angela Logomasini, 01/20/2005
DDT is the best tool for controlling the spread of malaria. It can be
applied in and around huts and other homes that don't have screens and other
devices that effectively keep out mosquitoes. Used this way, DDT repels
mosquitoes from entering the homes. This approach is effective because malaria-carrying
mosquitoes feed largely at night when people are inside.
DDT has a proven record of effectiveness. Many nations, including the
United States, eradicated malaria-carrying mosquitoes using DDT. South Africa
nearly did the same, but it stopped using DDT under political pressure.
After halting DDT use, cases rose from about 4,100 in 1995 to more than
27,000 by 1999, according to a study conducted by researchers Amir Attaran
and Rajendra Maharaj. In recent years, South Africa resumed DDT use, and
cases have dropped 85 percent according to Roger Bate of Africa Fighting
Despite anti-DDT activist claims, DDT has not been shown to have any
adverse impacts on human health. According to A.G. Smith of the scientific
journal the Lancet: "If the huge amounts of DDT used are taken into account,
the safety record for human beings is extremely good. In the 1940s many
people were deliberately exposed to high concentrations of DDT through dusting
programmes or impregnation of clothes, without any apparent ill effect."
Additionally, limited use of DDT for malaria control does not affect wildlife
because of it is not used widely in the environment where animals could
DNA study offers hope of blocking spread of malaria
Comparing the DNA of four malaria parasites, researchers have identified
genes that could lead to a vaccine stopping people spreading the disease.
Mutation for drug resistance in Indian malaria identified
Indian scientists have identified the mutation that allows the fatal form
of malaria circulating there to resist the drug chloroquine.
Tiny tools tackle malaria
Researchers are using 'optical tweezers' — a form of nanotechnology — to
study the elasticity of cells infected by malaria parasites.
US$43 million boost for synthetic malaria drug
The Gates Foundation is investing in efforts to produce the antimalarial
compound artemisinin from genetically modified bacteria.