Kernels of damage

Genetically modified (GM) corn by Monsanto has been linked to organ damage in rats by French researchers. Their study, published in the International Journal of Biological Sciences, explains that most of the effects were concentrated in the kidney and liver function and were seen within just 90 days after the rats had eaten three varieties of GM corn (Mon 863, Mon 810 and NK 603). Some negative effects were also noted in the heart, adrenal, spleen and blood cells. These effects varied between male and female rats. The study’s author, Gilles-Eric Seralini, said Monsanto neglects significant health effects in mammals that are different in males and females eating genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

In a lengthy response, seen at, the chemical agriculture company said the study was “based on faulty analytical methods and reasoning.” Monsanto had concluded the corn was safe for consumption after conducting a 90-day study. However, most tests run for up to two years to evaluate chronic health problems, which are rarely seen in just 90 days.

The study concluded, “These substances have never before been an integral part of the human or animal diet, and therefore their health consequences for those who consume them, especially over longtime periods are currently unknown.” The researchers call for “an immediate ban on the import and cultivation of these GMOs and strongly recommend that additional long-term (up to two years) animal feeding studies be performed in at least three species, preferably also multigenerational, to provide true scientifically valid data on the acute and chronic toxic effects of GM crops, feed and foods.”