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Date: Sun, 2 Aug 1998 11:11:43 -0500
From: Richard Wolfson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: GE News
Sound fishy? Scientists eye fish-enhanced ice cream
By J.B. Legault TORONTO (Reuters)
July 28, 1998
- Anybody feel like fish ice cream? Although it probably wouldn't affect
the taste, a protein produced by the ice-loving flounder could soon make
its way into ice cream to protect it from frost damage, according to a
team of Canadian scientists who released their findings Tuesday. The
flounder winters off the coast of Newfoundland in waters where
temperatures often fall well below the freezing point. To keep from
prematurely becoming frozen fish sticks, the winter flounder produces a
protein that a team of scientists from the University of Toronto and
Toronto's Hospital of Sick Children have been able to synthesize.
"This protein is one of the only ones to bind to ice, to modify ice
morphology and to inhibit the growth of ice crystals," Dr Choy Yew,
professor of biochemistry at the University of Toronto, told Reuters
Tuesday. This protein could have several practical applications, said
Yew. For example, scientists have been able to transplant the flounder gene
that produces the protein into Atlantic salmon, creating a transgenic
species of salmon that can be raised in much colder waters.
Through genetic engineering, this gene could also be spliced into plants to
protect them aginst the cold. This could be of immense value, for example,
to citrus growers whose crops are sometimes damaged or destroyed by
unusually cold weather. As for the ice cream industry, said Yew, the
formation of large ice crystals is a major problem that could be solved by
the protein's inhibiting properties.
Pig livers may be used as human dialysis machines
July 31, 1998
LONDON, Reuters [WS] via NewsEdge Corporation : Imutran, a leading company
in the development of animal to human transplants, announced plans on
Thursday to use pig livers to treat human patients.
The British subsidiary of Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis said the
genetically modified pig livers could be an interim measure until a
suitable human organ is found.
``What we are thinking of doing is using the liver as a temporary support,
outside the body, as a sort of dialysis machine for patients in liver
failure to allow the doctors to buy time until a human organ becomes
available for transplantation,'' Dr Corrine Savill, Imutran's chief
operating officer, told BBC radio.
Trashing the crops, By John Vidal
Guardian (london) Friday July 31, 1998
Patrick Whitefield is a lecturer with no history of civil disobedience.
After hearing that five women had earlier this month gone into a test field
and pulled up some genetically modified plants being tested for the US
chemical firm Monsanto, he phoned a Manchester-based group called GenetiX
Snowball and offered to do the same. Should Whitefield do so, he risks
being sued, fined and given a criminal record. Within weeks of his offer, a
Manchester community worker, a Welsh lawyer and at least 250 others
including TV chef Antony Worrall-Thomson had phoned to support or to join
others taking "non-violent direct action" against the controversial crops.
Hardly eco-warriors in the road-protest style, their concern ranged across
health, environment, consumer choice and the concentration of the food
chain into very few hands.
The Scotsman July 30, 1998
FEARS ADMITTED ON GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD
BYLINE: Camillo Fracassini Consumer Affairs Correspondent
MOST people in Britain oppose the idea of genetically modified crops,
citing fears about tampering with nature and the possible effects on health
and the environment, according to a survey. The poll by NOP found more
than six out of ten people were opposed to the genetic modification of
Researchers also discovered that of those who were against genetically
modified food, 57 per cent believed humans should not tamper with nature,
and almost a third said they were concerned about the possible effects on
health. More than one in five said not enough was known about the possible
effects of genetic engineering on the environment.
The findings follow a series of recent attacks on genetically
modified crops in Scotland by environmental activists and a warning by the
Prince of Wales last month that geneticists should stop "playing God" with
nature. A threat from a group of environmentalists to destroy crops
on 40 sites in Scotland has reportedly prompted genetic engineering
companies to press the Scottish Office to stop publishing the location of
genetically modified crops.
The Christian Science Monitor July 30, 1998
SECTION: FEATURES; IDEAS; GENETICS;
Plants Without Seeds Challenge Historic Farming Practices
BYLINE: Laurent Belsie, Staff writer
Ever since humans started farming 10,000 years ago, they have followed a
basic tenet: Save some of the harvest as seed for next year's crop. Saving
seed shaped more-modern notions of avings and investment. "Eating one's
seed corn" became, in America, a metaphor for desperation. So when
Mississippi-based Delta & Pine Land, the world's largest cottonseed
company, announced in March a technology that could put an end to
seed-saving, reaction was swift and negative. Farm groups in developing
nations condemned it. One British newspaper carried the headline:
"Terminator seeds threaten a barren future for farmers."
The so-called "terminator" seeds are stirring deep concerns that a handful
of global corporations will use their control over biotechnology to ensure
profits for themselves, whatever the impact on agriculture. Given the
increasing reliance of public plant-breeding programs on private support,
the future looks especially ominous, say agriculture experts.
Richard Wolfson, PhD
Consumer Right to Know Campaign,
for Mandatory Labelling and Long-term
Testing of all Genetically Engineered Foods,
500 Wilbrod Street
Ottawa, ON Canada K1N 6N2
tel. 613-565-8517 fax. 613-565-1596
Our website, http://www.natural-law.ca/genetic/geindex.html
contains more information on genetic engineering as well as
previous genetic engineering news items
Subscription fee to genetic engineering news is $35 for 12 months
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