Thursday, May 26, 2005

Corn & Potatoes: genetically modified threats

Human kidney

Human corn

Rats fed GM corn due for sale in Britain developed abnormalities in blood and kidneys.
Must read at:

And, a major newspaper in the UK, The Independent, has published an expose of suppressed research results that showed very worrisome health threats from genetically modified potatoes and corn. Excerpt:

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. . . Dr. Arpad Pusztai was then the bogeyman of the British scientific establishment. No less a figure than Lord May - then the Government's chief scientific adviser, now president of the Royal Society - had accused him of violating "every canon of scientific rectitude", and ministers and top scientists had queued up to denounce him.

His crime had been to find disturbing evidence that the GM potatoes he was studying damaged the immune systems, brains, livers and kidneys of rats - and to mention it briefly in a television programme before his research was completed and published.

His punishment was draconian; his research was stopped, his team disbanded and his data confiscated. He was ostracised by his colleagues, forced into retirement and gagged for seven months, forbidden to put his case. I was the first journalist to interview him at length, spending six hours with him.

I arrived, very sceptical, at his semi-detached house in the granite city, where he had worked for the prestigious Rowett Research Institute for 37 years, with two handwritten pages of hostile questions. But I was surprised by what I found.

For a start, he proved to be no wild-eyed maverick, but the world's acknowledged top authority in his field, a small, vital, precise man with 270 papers to his name and a self-deprecating sense of humour. Far from a headline-seeker, he was evidently a bewildered stranger to public controversy, cautious in his language, anxious to cross every scientific "t" before venturing a conclusion.

Perhaps most surprising of all he turned out to be, in his words, "a very enthusiastic supporter" of genetic modification who had fully expected his experiments - approved and funded by the Government - to give it a "clean bill of health".

"I was totally taken aback," he told me. "I was absolutely confident that I wouldn't find anything. But the longer I spent on the experiments, the more uneasy I became." . . . .

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See whole story at:


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