MONTHLY REVIEW No. 26
from Claire Robinson, editor
+ ABNORMALLY HIGH DEATH RATE IN PROGENY OF RATS FED GM SOY, SAYS RUSSIAN STUDY
Abnormally high death rates and growth retardation have been found in the progeny of female rats who had GM soy added to their food, a Russian study led by Dr Irina Ermakova of the Russian Academy of Sciences has found. Some pups from GM-fed mothers were quite a bit smaller. After 2 weeks, 36% of them weighed less than 20 grams compared to about 6% from the other groups.
With the rats fed GM soy, a massive 55.6% of their progeny were dead within three weeks, compared with 9% of the progeny of rats fed non-GM soy and 6.8% of the progeny of the control group, which was fed a diet without any added soy.
Dr Ermakova commented, "The morphology and biochemical structures of rats are very similar to those of humans, and this makes the results we obtained very disturbing."
Visit http://www.regnum.ru/english/526651.html to see the data laid out in a table. Also at this URL is an astonishing picture comparing same-age rats from the GM soy group and the control group. The GM soy rat is a fraction of the size of the control rat.
+ AAEM CALLS FOR HEALTH SAFETY TESTS ON GM SOYA
"I presented Dr. Ermakova's findings, with her permission, at the annual conference of the American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) in Tucson on October 27, 2005. In response, the AAEM board passed a resolution asking the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) to sponsor an immediate, independent follow-up of the study." reports Jeffrey M. Smith, author of Seeds of Deception, in an article which puts the new study (see below) into context.
+ TRANSGENE FOUND IN BLOOD, LIVER, SPLEEN AND KIDNEY OF GM-FED PIGS
Fragments of the Cry1A(b) transgene, present in Bt crops, have been detected in blood, liver, spleen and kidney of piglets raised with GM feed, according to a paper by Raffaele Mazza et al in Transgenic Research.
+ "SMOKE, MIRRORS AND POVERTY" - BIOTECH'S DECEPTIVE FICTION
GM WATCH readers will be familiar with the role of Monsanto-trained scientist Dr Florence Wambugu in massively hyping the failed GM sweet potato project in Kenya. But she's also been doing a similar job on (non-GM) tissue cultured bananas, a joint project of Wambugu's Africa Harvest and DuPont, according to two reports from academic researchers.
Just as with the GM sweet potato, it turns out that there's no credible evidence that any of Wambugu's claims are true and plenty of evidence to the contrary.
+ GM-FOR-AFRICA PROJECT "HOMEGROWN" AT DES MOINES, IOWA
It's interesting how the Bill Gates-backed GM sorghum project is being spun for different audiences. According to Florence Wambugu, who heads the CropLife International-backed 'Africa Harvest' lobby group that's fronting the project, this is "absolutely an African driven project" and nothing to do with "foreign companies introducing technology that may not be appropriate to Africa".
That's what Wambugu told Reuters in Johannesburg. But in the US, the Des Moines Register reports that the project is heavily dependent on the DuPont-owned subsidiary Pioneer's "crop seed expertise and vast plant genetic resources".
+ SOUTH AFRICA HALTS GM IMPORTS
All applications for commodity imports of GMOs into South Africa have been halted pending the outcome of a study that the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has just commenced, which is looking at the impacts of GM imports.
+ WHITHER BIOSAFETY?
An important report from GRAIN with the above title says that in Africa, Asia and Latin America, the Biosafety Protocol is not generating the anticipated effective legislation at the national level: "In country after country, we see laws and policies being put in place to facilitate the entry of GM crops, even as governments proclaim their concern for biosafety and adherence to the Protocol."
+ AFRICAN FOOD FOR AFRICA'S STARVING ROADBLOCKED IN CONGRESS
A proposal to change the law to allow the US federal government to buy food in Africa for Africans facing starvation instead of paying enormous sums to ship it from America has been stalled in Congress.
+ GM VULTURES FEED OFF AFRICA
Dr Mae-wan Ho sent us an image used at a conference on Genetic Engineering and Sustainable Agriculture in Lusaka, Zambia by two pro-GM scientists, Luke Mumba from Zambia and Joseph M Wekundah from Kenya. It shows a starving African infant crawling along the ground with a vulture watching over it. Mae-wan tells us that people were given the impression that the child was crawling towards food aid.
However, neither of the pro-GM scientists made it clear to the audience that this picture was taken in the early 1990s in Sudan, long before GM food aid became an issue. Instead, both GM proponents used it with the clear implication that any blocking of GM food aid or GM technology could result in the tragedy of a child being unable to find the relief it desperately needed.
NB: While nobody died as a result of the concern among southern African countries over GM food aid, there is evidence that pro-GM lobbyists have rewritten history to manufacture such "deaths".
+ SUSTAINABLE FARMING CAN SAVE THE WORLD
Swiss ag specialist and winner of the
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