Genes From Genetically Engineered Foods Could Be Detected in Brain
Thanks to Mothers for Natural Law Biweekly News,
Cliff Kinzel and Richard Wolfson.
Date: 12 Aug 1998 15:14:20 -0500 From: "Clare Watson"
Subject: Fw: Do genes get destroyed in the gut?
PRESS RELEASE Weds. 12th August 1998
Research Highlights Risk of using Viral Promoter Genes in New
Fragments of artificial genes inserted into foods were detected in the brain
cells of baby mice in research conducted Dr. Walter Doefler of the Institute of
Genetics, University of Cologne.(1) Conventional wisdom had previously assumed
that genetic material was destroyed in the process of digestion. The research
emerged on the UTV World in Action programme last Monday.
"This has huge implications for the use of genetically engineered foods" said
Quentin Gargan of Genetic Concern. "Industry would have us believe that genetic
engineering is a simple technology in which a single naturally occurring gene
is taken from one plant and inserted into another, but nothing could be further
from the truth".
We may have a gene which gives us blue eyes, and this gene exists in every cell
in our body - part of this gene is a promoter region which ensures that it is
only switched on in cells in our eyes - otherwise, every part of our body would
be blue from our hair to our toenails.
When genes are inserted into a plant, they are accompanied by a promoter region
from a virus. This promoter ensures that the gene is switched on at all times
and in all parts of the plant. Viruses such as the cauliflower mosaic virus and
a figwort virus have promoter regions which are highly active, and these are
included in genes which were inserted into the sugar beet currently being
tested in field trials by Monsanto around the country.
"The idea that fragments of DNA from viral promoters could find their way into
cells of new born babies is a frightening prospect", said Mr Gargan "yet
Monsanto admitted in the World in Action programme that they do not conduct
long term testing of these genetically engineered foods".
(1) Journal of molecular genetics and genetics Vol 242: 495-504,
Date: Tue, 15 Sep 1998 10:50:34 -0400
From: joe cummins
Subject: Uptake of food genes into embryo
Prof. Joe Cummins e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
The study below shows that food genes not only get into adult tissues
but also invade the unborn!
Uptake of foreign DNA from the environment: the gastrointestinal
tract and the placenta as portals of entry [see comments]
Doerfler W; Schubbert R
Institut fur Genetik, Universitat zu Koln, Federal Republic of
Wien Klin Wochenschr, 110(2):40-4 1998 Jan 30
Foreign DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) is part of our environment.
Considerable amounts of foreign DNA of very different origin
are ingested daily with food. In a series of experiments we
fed the DNA of bacteriophage M13 as test DNA to mice and showed
that fragments of this DNA survive the passage through the
gastrointestinal (GI) tract in small amounts (1-2%).
Food-ingested M13 DNA reaches peripheral white blood cells, the
spleen and liver via the intestinal epithelia and cells in the
Peyer's patches of the intestinal wall. There is evidence to
assume that food-ingested foreign DNA can become covalently linked
to mouse-like DNA. When M13 DNA is fed to pregnant mice the test
DNA can be detected in cells in various organs of the fetuses and
of newborn animals, but never in all cells of the mouse fetus. It
is likely that the M13 DNA is transferred by the transplacental
route and not via the germ line. The consequences of foreign DNA
uptake for mutagenesis and oncogenesis have not yet been