[extropy-chat] Eat Corn and Die, Rat!

Adrian Tymes wingcat at pacbell.net
Mon May 23 16:09:53 UTC 2005

--- Damien Broderick <thespike at satx.rr.com> wrote:

> Rats fed on a diet rich in genetically modified corn developed 
> abnormalities to internal organs and changes to their blood, raising
> fears 
> that human health could be affected by eating GM food.

> According to the confidential 1,139-page report, these health
> problems were 
> absent from another batch of rodents fed non-GM food as part of the 
> research project.

Non-GM food, perhaps...but was it equally rich in non-GM corn?
(Specifically maize, since this variety was apparently specifically
approved as equivalent to that.)  Too much of any one thing is rarely
good for a living body.

> Although Monsanto last night dismissed the abnormalities in rats as 
> meaningless and due to chance, reflecting normal variations between
> rats, a 
> senior British government source said ministers were so worried by
> the 
> findings that they had called for further information.

...and why does Monsanto even bother to trot out the reasons it knows
won't wash?

> Now, however, any decision to allow the corn to be marketed in the UK
> will 
> cause widespread alarm. The full details of the rat research are
> included 
> in the main report, which Monsanto refuses to release on the grounds
> that 
> "it contains confidential business information which could be of
> commercial 
> use to our competitors".

'Tis of more commercial use to Monsanto to have it out there.

I wonder if it's actually the "business" decisions of the GM developers
(like trying to use GM foods to impose "no seed storage" policies) that
are doing far more damage to the development of GM foods than any
amount of Luddite activism.

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