At 08:40 PM 7/14/97 -0700, Diane Ridout wrote:
>Here is an article on some research happening at Cornell. I have emailed
>Robert Granados (the researcher named in this article) and asked him to
>answer some of the questions raised in this article, and to say whether
>this substance has been used in the field, and what applications his team
>envisions for it. I will forward his response (if he ever makes one).
>Diane Ridout, Instructor, ACP.............................................
>Kwantlen University College, "Talk
>PO Box 9030 doesn't
>Surrey, BC, Canada cook rice," they say.
>Tel: (604) 599-2964 Voice mail 9837.......................................
>---------- Forwarded message ----------
>As we recklessly expand our action based on our delusion of separation from
>nature, I shake my head and wonder how bad things will have to get before
>we realize, like Pogo, how many of our modern ills we are doing to
>ourselves.... I fear that the horror needs to get much larger to get our
>attention, and deeply hope that this is not true, for the upcoming biotech
>catastrophes, if not stopped, may be truly unrecoverable - at least for our
>species.... P. Dines
>-- FORWARD ---
>From: Richard Wolfson, INTERNET:email@example.com
>Date: Wed, Jul 2, 1997, 9:22 AM
>Subject: genetically engineered insecticide
>CORNELL SCIENTISTS ENGINEER VIRUS THAT KILLS CROP PESTS
>Futures World News - June 26, 1997 06:53, Ithaca, New York, FWN/UPI--=
>RESEARCHERS AT Cornell University have created a protein that allows a
>virus to evade the immune systems of insects, killing hardy pests that
>pr ey on farm crops.
>Researchers say the genetically engineered protein enhancin works by
>breaking down the virtually impermeable interior lining of a bug's
>intestine. That allows a virus to infect the insect, killing it
>Cornell researcher Robert Granados says the enhancin binds to a
>mucinous protein in intestine lining--formally known as the peritrophic
>matrix--an d destroys the matrix. That matrix generally provides bugs
>with a barrier against microbial attack.
>The scientists can combine the enhancin and a specific virus in
>crystals and inject crystals into a leaf or other substance a bug
>eats. The one-t wo punch has proven effective against seven bugs so
>far, including cotton bollworms, armyworms and the velvetbean
>The scientists also are studying how to genetically engineer enhancin
>directly in plants. The researchers say the enhancin enzyme poses no
>threat to humans or other mammals because the acidity in human stomachs
>renders it harmless.
>According to Dr. Joe Cummins, Professor Emeritus of Genetics at the
>University of Western Ontario, those whose stomach acids are
>neutralized such as people taking antacid or ulcer medications such as
>Tagamet (Cimetidine) are at risk from exposure to enhancin. Such
>people are numbered in the millions. Other scientists have also
>expressed concern a t such genetically engineered toxins in our food
>that are meant to break do wn by stomach acidity, since stomach acidity
>can be quite variable.
>PD NOTE: Not to mention the harm to the beneficial bugs that we might
>not want to harm; the unintended consequences that they aren't considering
>(genetic engineering is hardly a tested and perfected science), both in
>t he genetically-altered material and in the ecosystem we're impacting;
>and th e huge risks of creating a supervirus and putting it into our