Need Safeguards for Gene-Tinkered Foods

Stephen C. Miller stcmille at nickel.ucs.indiana.edu
Thu Jun 24 17:06:43 EST 1993


In article <C94zzI.KLC at scr.siemens.com> aad at scr.siemens.com (Anthony A. Datri) writes:
>
>Just to add a little perspective, few people realize that more subtle genetic
>engineering has been done for thousands of years.  Domestic dogs and cats
>are good examples of completely artificial species.
>

Just about every important species of animal and plant that humans rely
upon for food has been genetically manipulated - often virtually beyond
recognition.  Corn is perhaps the best example of this. However any
plant that is selectively bred is at least somewhat "artificial."

It's hard for me to understand wht the fuss is about with genetically
engineered foods, since the genes being introduced are for the most part
known quantities, as opposed to, say, hybridizing with wild species,
whose properties may be completely unknown.  it seems to me that
genetically engineered foods would probably be safer because of this.

Obviously we can't know in advance what all the effects of genetic
manipulation will be, but considering the amount of chemical
transformation that occurs in simple acts of cooking, it seems to me
that much of the noise on this one is hysteria.

I'm not advocating "all science is good - modern living through
chemicals, etc." but I do think people cringe unnecessarily every time
they hear words like "genetically altered."


-- 
Steve Miller				stcmille at nickel.ucs.indiana.edu

		I am a famous rock star!



More information about the Bioforum mailing list