Genies and Bottles

The biggest problem with GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) is the lack of reversibility. In most cases if you discover you are doing something really dumb, you just stop doing it. With GMOs, that is not enough. You have irrevocably introduced your genes into wild plants and weeds and non GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) crops. There is no putting the genie back in the bottle. This means you need an exceptional amount of care and testing (which is incompatible with profitability).

One classic example was introducing a GMO Klebsiella planticola bacterium that produces alcohol. At the very last second Michael Holmes, a student needing a project for his PhD thesis, noticed that this thing killed nearly all plants by drowning their roots in alcohol.

I think we need some research why so many people are now allergic to wheat. It did not used to be so. I did not used to be, but now I am. It could be that wheat itself has changed.

GMOs sometimes use genes from totally unrelated species. This could trigger unexpected allergies. We need labeling of out-of-species genes to help track down such problems.

In general, I want more caution on anything you administer to almost everyone. Testing should be much more cautious than for a drug you administer to just a few people, for whom serious side effects are acceptable.

~ Roedy (1948-02-04 age:70)