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Genetically Edited Crops Proposed as Alternative to GMOs

August 14, 2014, 4:33 PM

Science may soon offer a compromise to individuals who stand on opposite sides of the genetically modified food debate. While many kinds of genetically modified foods contain genes from foreign species, such as tomatoes that carry salmon genes, a new kind of genetic process called genetic editing would not require such blending. The technique was recently discussed in a scientific paper written by researchers at the Istituto Agrario San Michele in Italy and published in Trends in Biotechnology. Chidananda Nagamangala Kanchiswamy, one of the lead researchers, said in a recent press release:

"The simple avoidance of introducing foreign genes makes genetically edited crops more 'natural' than transgenic crops obtained by inserting foreign genes."

Opposition to genetically modified foods is stronger across the pond where the European Union heavily regulates the sales of GMOs, requiring producers to follow a strict labeling system. While regulatory regimes are weaker in the US, many individuals suggest we begin taking a European approach. Popular astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson is not one of them, however. In a recent interview, he advised opponents of GMOs to "chill out" as the practice of genetic modification has existed since Mendel experimented with pea plants.

Read more at Nature World News

Photo credit: Shutterstock


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