Genetically Modified Organisms Essay

851 Words 4 Pages
Scientists have been changing genomes of plants and animals by integrating new genes from a different species through genetic engineering, creating a genetically modified organism (GMO). Consumers in America have been eating GMOs since 1996, when they went on the market. There are benefits to genetically modifying crop plants, as it improves the crop quality and increases yield, affecting the economy and developing countries. But there are also negative effects from GMOs. Consumption of GMOs has various health effects on both body systems of animals and humans. GMOs also affect the environment, ecosystems and other animal species. The cons outweigh the pros in the case of GMOs. According to scientists, genetically engineering crops …show more content…
GM crops can save lives by helping feed people in developing countries and avoid starvation and malnutrition. However, the way GMO’s are created disrupts the organism’s DNA. For one thing, “genetic engineering artificially combines genes from different species and forcibly inserts them into unknown and random locations on the host genome” (The Good, Bad and Ugly about GMOs 3). Because the organism’s genome is changed, natural genes may be erased or turned on or off. This process can create mutations in “hundreds or thousands of locations throughout the plant’s DNA”(Smith 1). This can be harmful if the production of toxins or allergens in an organism increases and if a dormant virus is switched on. Overall, animals fed Bt crops that are genetically modified have suffered from disease, sterility, and have died. In India, “thousands of sheep buffalo, and goats… died after grazing on Bt cotton plants”(GMO Dangers 1). In North America, farmers have reported that after feeding their pigs GM corn, the pigs had low conception rates, became sterile, or had false pregnancies. After eating GM corn, twelve cows died in Germany. Also, “other cows in the herd developed a mysterious illness and had to be killed” (The Good, Bad and Ugly about GMOs 5). Rats fed Bt corn “showed significant changes in their blood cells, livers, and kidneys”(The Good, Bad and Ugly about GMOs 5). Mice that have ingested genetically modified

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