A recent study published in the journal Environment International has found that within the body of published literature on genetically-modified organisms (GMO), there exists almost an equal number of both studies suggesting they are safe and identical to natural varieties, and studies suggesting they are questionable and even dangerous. And among those studies that claim GMOs to be safe, the vast majority are funded by biotechnology companies that either produce the involvedGMOs, or have a vested interest in their promotion.
Jose Domingo and Jordi Gine Bordonaba from the Universitat Rovira i Virgili Laboratory of Toxicology and Environmental Health conducted areviewof available published GMOstudiesin databases like PubMed and Scopus. They found that the overall number of studies involving GMOs has increased since 2006 when the group last conducted an investigation. But such studies tend to focus mainly on corn and soy, two of the most widely propagatedGMOcrops, and were largely conducted by thebiotechnologycompanies that created them.
Though all the reviewed studies were published in credible, peer-reviewed journals, both sides of the GMO debate are represented, which raises an interesting and obvious point about the credibility of the peer-review process in general. And interestingly, some authors of the studies that proposed GMOs to be assafeas conventional varieties have since expressed concern about the limited findings of their studies, suggesting that additional long-term reviews be conducted to verify without a doubt that GMOs are safe for human consumption.
One study published in 2009 in the journalCritical Reviews in Food Science and Nutritionactually cites animal toxicity studies in which GMOs inflicted organ and other bodily damage, including hepatic, pancreatic, renal and reproductive failures. The same study points to GMOs causing increases in insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1 levels), a protein implicated in causing cancer (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/…).
Conclusively, the new study demonstrates clearly that there is a lack of solid evidence proving GMOs to be safe. No long-term studies have ever been conducted to prove that GMOs do not cause harm to theenvironment, to animals, or to humans. On the contrary, there are plenty of independent studies that continue to legitimately question thesafetyof GMOs, and why they have been allowed into thefoodsupply without proper review.
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