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September 24, 2000


GM, Monarchs, Published Data


I agree with Dr Prakash that so far there are no genes from the animal
kingdom into plants. But would like to ask the basic question : how the
animal genes are different from those of plants? Isn't the basic
difference between vagetarians and non vegetarians is that vegetarians
don't kill another living being to satisfy their hunger. Through GMOs one
is trying to achieve the best. Choosing resistant genes from
microorganisms might make it possible to grow crops on the vast acrage of
wastelands and thus making food affordable to millions of people.

Vibha Dhawan

Subj: RE: BIO Statement: EPA Report Finds Biotech Crops Have Little Im
pact on Monarch Butterflies
Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2000 2:17:20 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: ldry

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Dan EramianCharles CraigLisa
Dry(202) 857-0244EPA

Report Finds Biotech Crops Have Little Impact On Monarch Butterflies

WASHINGTON (September 22, 2000)-The Environmental Protection Agency(EPA)
reaffirmed Wednesday that a review of all available scientific information
indicates that monarch butterflies are at very little risk from Bacillus
thuringiensis (Bt) corn products, contrary to widely published reports.
EPA further found that "In fact, some authors are predicting that the
widespread cultivation of Bt crops may have huge benefits for monarch
butterfly survival." Titled "Bt Plant-Pesticides Biopesticides
Registration Action Document," the effort represents a preliminary draft
risk assessment to evaluate the health, safety and environmental risks, as
well as benefits of Bt corn, cotton and potato plants. This comprehensive
scientific assessment is available for public comment and scientific
review, which will be considered October 18-20 by a peer review with the
EPA's Scientific Advisory Panel on the scientific issues in connection
with this assessment. According to the EPA, after incorporating peer
review and public comments, the agency will use this information to reach
decisions regarding renewal of registrations for several Bt products and
development of any necessary mitigation measures, if needed."This rigorous
review of the vast array of scientific information about foods and crops
improved through biotechnology refutes once again the claims of
anti-biotechnology critics," said Dr. Val Giddings, vice president for
food and agriculture of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO).
"The assessment confirms the findings of EPA and numerous other regulatory
agencies and scientific bodies around the world that crops and food
produced through biotechnology pose no adverse health or environmental
problems," he added.The report notes that "significant benefits accrue to
growers, the public, and the environment from the availability and use of
certain Bt plant-pesticides," adding that direct benefits to growers in
1999 likely exceeded $100 million. BIO represents more than 900
biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology
centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states and more than 27
other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development
of health care, agricultural industrial and environmental biotechnology

To review the report in its entirety go to: www.epa.gov/scipoly/sap/
andscroll to the following:October 18-20, 2000: Issues pertaining to the
Bt plant pesticides Risk and Benefit Assessments

Link to AP news coverage

Subj: Taco Terrorists, EPA Report, False attacks - and pharmaceuticals
Date: Sat, 23 Sep 2000 1:40:28 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: AndrDK@aol.com

...this Taco stuff is probably an entertaining story - however, and I
would appreciate a comment from anybody, this brings me to a concern.
Currently working on a report on transgenic plants producing
bio-pharmaceuticals, it should be realised, that a higher mobility and
density of human and animal populations -not to forget people in
developing countries- will increase thedemand for cheap, quick and
reliable production of vaccines and diagnostic antibodies. If we add the
great potential for some other applications, for example the use of
anti-ideotypic antibodies for immuntherapy in some B-cell lymphoma, it is
apparently clear that there is not only much profit to make,there is a
real demand. Now, field releases so far occured mainly in the US and
appropriate regulations are not yet in place covering all the possible
options for releasing plants producing these pharmaceuticals. And for
Europe...? We may not expect large-scale field trials but instead a number
of small-scale but not only experimental but commercial trials. Who is
going to regulate this. Isn't there a gap in the regulatory system ? There
is a need for a controlled release (if containments are not possible or
too expensive) and the release is for commercial purposes. Isn't there a
risk for a largely disharmonized procedure ? If it is dealt as an
experimental trials, it will be regulated on a national level. But how can
this be harmonised ? Moreover, since a seed is a seed and you do not know
if it contains what it normally does or Interleukin, a vaccine against a
hemorrhagic fever or a milkprotein, what kind of labeling and segregation
procedure is appropriate ? I would Be concerned if even 0.1% of my
cornflakes contain a highly biologically active pharmaceutical....at least
as long as I feel healthy. I would really appreciate if you could share
your opinion with me.

Best regards


Andr=E9 de Kathenbtc - BioTechConsultBrunnenstr.
3D-31535 NeustadtGermany
el ++49-(0)5072-371
mob ++49-(0)171-5397529
email dekathen@biotech-consult.de
web www.biotech-consult.de

Date: Sep 25 2000 05:51:55 EDT
From: Ted "Fjällman"

Dear Agbioviewers,

I was asked to find published data showing independent testing of the
genetically modified corn and soya available for consumption in
Europe.After reading an article by W.K. Novak entitled “Substantial
Equivalence of Antinutrients and Inherent Plant Toxins in Genetically
Modified Novel Foods” (Food Chem Tox 2000) I checked out some of the www
links referred to in the paper.I found that Maff in the UK (
www.maff.gov.uk ) are undertaking “The Farm Scale Evaluation programme”,
which was launched in March 2000 and is a three year programme to allow
independent researchers to see whateffect growing GM crops might have on
farmland wildlife, compared with growing non GM crops. There have been
various concluded trials under ‘SCIMAC’ (Supply Chain Initiative on
Modified Agricultural Crops).But regarding finished trials a useful link
is the United States Department of Agriculture Biotech section
www.usda.gov/biotech. But I found it easier to use a subsidiary webpage of
theirs entitled“Information Systems in Biotechnology” at
http://nbiap.biochem.vt.edu/, where you can search their “risk assessment”
part or look at individualfield trials under “Regulatory
information”.Another excellent link is the EU’s JRC (Joint Research
Centre) at http://food.jrc.it . There you can find a biotech website (
http://food.jrc.it/gmo ) where you can search for all up to date field
trials in the EU, by plant country etc. However, many of these trials
would not be considered independent, but I found quite a few that would be
worth following up on. For example there has been a trial done on
maize/corn by the Imperial College in London. To find out about the
results of individual trials one can write to:

(quoting the trialnumber found on the web page)

Joint Research Centre
Institute for Health and Consumer Protection
GMOs in Food and Environment
TP 361
I-21020 Ispra (VA)
Phone +39-0332785239
Fax +39-0332785483
e-mail guy.van-den-eede@jrc.it

This was a very quick query, so I hope some of you can follow up with some
more specific trial information, but I hope it was a satisfactory