French scientists found tumors, multiple organ damage and premature mortality in rats exposed to Monsanto’s genetically modified corn or the company’s top-selling weedkiller, a study published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology shows.
Mammary tumors and severe damage on liver and kidney of rats feeding on Monsanto's GM corn were found. Researchers also report 50 percent of male and 70 percent of female rats experienced premature mortality after certain period of time of exposure to Monsanto’s products, compared to only 30 percent and 20 percent from the control group. French scientists observed potential association of this finding with a probable impending toxicity level of Monsanto’s genetically modified corn or its top-selling weedkiller.
Skeptical about the result, Monsanto through Thomas Helscher, its spokesman, according to report informs the public their company would conduct a thorough study concerning this. This would include further critical inquiry on the methodology used in the entire research investigation process. Based on the report, Helscher also adjoined an explanation:
"Numerous peer-reviewed scientific studies performed on biotech crops to date, including more than a hundred feeding studies, have continuously confirmed their safety, as reflected in the respective safety assessments by regulatory authorities around the world."
In addition, Reuters added:
Experts not involved in the study were skeptical, with one accusing the French scientists of going on a "statistical fishing trip" and others describing its methods as well below standard.
Genetically modified (GM) crops according to Monsanto are reliable and just the same with existing food crops considered safe for human consumption, so it is their strong stand there is no need for further safety assessment of GM food aspects that are the same with non-GM counterparts. However, Monsanto could not contest the fact many people are still describing GM crops as “untested” and “unsafe” for human consumption.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has a strong active role on the prevailing issues concerning GM foods. On its website, WHO explains:
WHO will take an active role regarding GM foods to ensure that public health can benefit as much as possible from the new technology and to make sure health will not be adversely affected by consumption of GM foods. It is imperative to guard against allergenicity of GM foods and transfer of antimicrobial resistance from food to humans, for instance. On the positive side, GM foods could help improve food security through better protection from pests and drought, produce vaccines and increase nutrient levels of foods.
Modern technologies must continue to be thoroughly evaluated, looking at both human and environmental effects together and not in isolation.
However, those who remain highly skeptical about the genetic modification of foods continue to voice safety issues and other related concerns linked with GM biotechnology that has been around for 15 years. Not surprisingly, Europe and the United States, on a number of points involving GM crops, continue to have differing views concerning the alleged promise such crops hold for humanity.
For more information why many are skeptical concerning the result of this study, additional discussions can be found here.