genetically modified organisms

Environmental contamination with heavy metals is often the result of various types of industrial processes. Because heavy metals can be dangerous to humans and other wildlife, contaminated sites need to be cleaned up. This isn't easy. Chemical extraction methods can introduce different types of pollutants into the environment.

Bioremediation -- using biological organisms to clean polluted areas -- is a hot area of research. Some plants can naturally sop up heavy metals without any ill effects, but plants don't always grow large enough to soak up all the pollution. Besides, plants can't be used to clean up contaminated water.

So, scientists have increasingly chosen to use the techniques of biotechnology to create genetically engineered microbes capable of gobbling up...

One final observation on our great post-war successes in controlling malaria by targeting its vector, the Anopheles mosquito. By using that most marvelous insecticide DDT, we were beginning to gain the upper hand in our conquest of malaria as clearly demonstrated in the table below.

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Country

Malaria occurrence per annum prior to introduction of DDT

Malaria occurrence per annum after the introduction of DDT

Sardinia

eggplant-florida-marketBt brinjal (eggplant) is a genetically modified plant which is created by inserting a gene from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis into the genome of the brinjal. The Bt brinjal has been developed to have resistance against lepidopteron insects. It was approved for commercialization in India in 2009, but after backlash due to anti-GMO fearmongering, a moratorium was facilitated on its release.

A workshop on Communicating Science and Bio-safety, organized by the Indian Institute of the Mass Communication, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change was...

We have to give a shout-out to freelance science writer Kavin Senapathy for her interview on dnaindia.com. Senapathy eloquently conveys the facts on genetically modified food for the article: Organic vs GM: finding the grain of truth.

When asked why she advocates the consumption of genetically modified foods, Senapathy quotes the father of the Green...

Tomato And CheeseWe have to give a shout-out to Levi Gadye over at io9.com for his informative article You Can Thank Genetic Engineering For Your Delicious Cheese. Unbeknown to most, GMOs are used to make about 80 to 90 percent of cheese around today. Gadye explains the development behind this process, as well as why GMO-produced cheese makes it difficult to say whether foods from companies like Chipotle are really GMO free.

Rennet enzymes,...

Screen Shot 2015-05-08 at 2.56.36 PMNewsweek s recent cover story puts it bluntly: YOU ARE TOTALLY WRONG ABOUT GENETICALLY ALTERED FOOD. And author Tom Parrett eloquently explains why in his article: GMO Scientists Could Save the World From Hunger, If We Let Them.

Parrett starts his piece by pointing out global issues that threaten traditional agriculture overfarming, drought, bugs, and extreme heat and how overcoming these issues is becoming increasingly more urgent due to our rapid global...

shutterstock_182088206 copyWe ve written about GM apples that resist browning and GM potatoes with decreased production of acrylamide and increased resistance to disease. And now, a new wave of GM foods is on the way this time designed to appeal to consumers with added health benefits. Companies developing these new products hope that they will be able to win over skeptical or health-conscious consumers.

Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc., the Canadian firm that developed the non-browning GM apple, is now working on...

Sunset In The KeysLast month we wrote about British biotech firm, Oxitec, aiming to release their genetically engineered mosquitoes in Key Haven, Florida, this spring. The mosquitoes were developed to help fight dengue and chikungunya, which are two viruses spread by the dangerous and difficult-to-control Aedes aegypti mosquito. However, according to an article in...

153697219The November ballot in Maui, Hawaii will include an initiative that would ban growing genetically modified crops in the area. Members of the group that helped to get this initiative on the ballot say they feel that there s a real threat to the health of the Earth and that they do not want to be an experimental lab. However, since GMO technology began in the mid-1990s, there have been over 2,000 studies providing evidence...

153697219California s Proposition 37 and Washington s Initiative 522 previously failed at the ballot box, and now Oregon and Colorado will soon be voting on their own GMO-labeling laws Oregon s Measure 92, and Colorado s Initiative 105.

One of Oregon s newspapers, The Eugene Register-Guard, published an editorial this month supporting the labeling law. The editorial states that although peer-reviewed scientific studies have found no evidence that GMOs are unsafe or pose any health risk to humans, it is irrelevant if a problem...