Genetically Modified Foods: The Evolution Of Genetic Modification?

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The Evolution of Genetic Modification

The conventional genetic alteration of the makeup of plants has been occurring for millennia; harvesting the seeds from the best crops and planting them years down the line; breeding and crossbreeding certain genes to make foods grow bigger and give them a sweeter taste. Through this intuitive process, humans have managed to transform the small, wild tomato into a number of different varieties: from big to small, beefsteak to grape, revolutionizing the food industry with every step taken (Journal of Biotechnology). Because of the invention of GM foods, individuals across the globe are given the opportunity to broaden their palate to that of a more diverse level, allowing for a happier and healthier lifestyle.
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Genetic engineers have the ability to take any gene from any living organism and insert it into practically any other organism. Not only are these transgenic products customized to fulfill the desires of society, but they are also claimed to be safer for human consumption than unaltered organisms. Professor Dean DellaPenna of Michigan State University points out that “risks are everywhere in our food supply.” In favor of genetically engineered foods, DellaPenna assures that scientists “minimize risks by doing rigorous testing” on these items. However, in question of the safety of biotech foods, the products are said to be okay for human use, “as far as we know.” (Journal of Biotechnology) Is rigorous testing enough evidence to prove that a genetically modified, edible organism is not harmful to the human body? How can these foods be harmful to the environment but not to humans? Through rigorous testing, scientists have found that there are no latent differences between foods produced from genetically modified crops and those cultivated from crops of a natural genetic …show more content…
However, there is one study these protesters value as critical to proving that genetically modified foods are a threat to human health. An experiment executed in Scotland in the year of 1996 showed that rats that were fed GM potatoes containing a gene for protein, lectin, fared poorly and suffered from internal organ damage. According to the journal article “Genetically Modified Plants and Human Health,” “The Royal Society has since stated that the study is flawed in many aspects of design, exaction and analysis’ and that ‘ no conclusions should be drawn from

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