Mother Rats Fed Genetically Modified Soy Led to 56% Mortality of Offspring
Medical Association Urges NIH to Follow-up Preliminary Evidence
October 31, 2005—Tucson, AZ. At the conference of the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) held from October 27-30, the results of a Russian rat study were presented in which an astounding 55.6% of the offspring of female rats fed genetically engineered soy flour died within three weeks. The female rats had received 5-7 grams of the Roundup Ready variety of soybeans, beginning two weeks before conception and continuing through nursing. By comparison, only 9% of the offspring of rats fed non-GM soy died. Furthermore, offspring from the GM-fed group were significantly stunted—36% weighed less than 20 grams after 2 weeks, compared to only 6.7% from the non-GM soy control group.
The study was conducted by Dr. Irina Ermakova, a leading scientist at the Institute of Higher Nervous Activity and Neurophysiology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS). It was originally presented on October 10, 2005 to the symposium on genetic modification in Russia, organized by the National Association for Genetic Security (NAGS). It was presented at the AAEM conference by Jeffrey M. Smith, author of Seeds of Deception, the world’s bestselling book on GM food safety.
Smith says, “The Russian study is preliminary and not conclusive. But given the disturbing and dramatic results, it begs immediate independent follow-up.”
Medical Academy Urges NIH Follow-up
The board of the American Academy of Environmental Medicine reviewed the Russian research, and endorsed a resolution at their October 30 meeting, which states: “We recognize that this study is preliminary in nature. It hasn’t yet been peer reviewed and the methodology has not been spelled out in detail. But given the magnitude of the findings and the implications for human health, we urge the National Institutes of Health to immediately replicate the research.”
According to Dr. Jim Willoughby, he Academy president, “Genetically modified soy, corn, canola, and cottonseed oil are being consumed daily by a significant proportion of our population. We need rigorous, independent and long-term studies to evaluate if these foods put the population at risk.”
Genetically Altered Foods Prone to Side Effects
Smith, who is the executive director of the Institute for Responsible Technology in Iowa, presented the AAEM conference with results from other published studies as well. Animals fed GM food developed potentially precancerous cell growth, stunted organs, damaged immune systems, problems in blood cell and liver cell development, lesions in the stomach, kidneys, and livers, and higher death rates. Also, nearly 25 farmers claim that varieties of GM corn caused their pigs to become sterile.
There has only been a single human feeding study, which, according to Smith, verified that the gene inserted into GM soy transferred into the DNA of intestinal bacterial. “This means that even if you stop eating GM soy, you may still have the foreign protein being produced inside you, possibly for the long term.”
According to Smith, the process of gene insertion can turn genes off, permanently turn them on, change the expression of hundreds of other genes, create mutations, and introduce new allergenic proteins. “Even the FDA’s own scientists warned of possible toxins, allergens, new diseases and nutritional problems,” says Smith, who refers to agency memos made public from a lawsuit. “Government scientists had urged their superiors to require long term safety tests but were ignored by the person in charge of policy—who was the former attorney for biotech giant Monsanto and later their vice president.” FDA policy states that the manufacturers can decide if their own GM foods are safe, without required studies.
Dr. Irina Ermakova, in Russia, +7-095-334-43-13, firstname.lastname@example.org
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