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Date:

May 11, 2000

Subject:

Science Friday (again)

 

- http://www.agbioworld.org, http://agbioview.listbot.com

Today on Science Friday they tried again to tackle questions surrounding the
GMO debate. An official from the FDA was interviewed in the first part of
the show, regarding testing and labelling of GMO products. Then an
eco-reactionary (you have got to love that moniker!) called in and said that
he had reviewed everything regarding the rBGH/milk controversy and that the
FDA scientists had eventually ruled that the hormone was degraded by
digestive enzymes and was therefore of no concern. He then went on to state
that this implies that breastfeeding infants, for example has no benefit
because immunoglobulins, lactoferrin, etc. are also similarly degraded
because they are proteins. Ergo, (in his mind), the FDA is very wrong about
rBGH because we do know that breastfeeding does have benefits in part
BECAUSE of those proteins.

AND THE FDA OFFICIAL COMPLETELY DROPPED THE BALL ON HER ANSWER! She
basically did not even address his contentions regarding protein stability
and his misguided perception that all proteins have the same properties.

I tried to call in to the show after hearing this, but only got a busy
signal.

We all, as scientists, need to continue to do our best to correct these
errors. Because the FDA official dropped the ball, now a certain proportion
of the audience which heard the caller's misinformation will be similarly
misinformed.

David J. Meyer, Ph.D.

(opinions expressed here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of
my employer)