Successful initial safety tests for genetically-modified rice that fights allergy
first-of-its-kind advance toward the next generation of genetically
modified foods — intended to improve consumers’ health — researchers in
Japan are reporting that a new transgenic rice designed to fight a
common pollen allergy appears safe in animal studies. Their report is
in the current issue of ACS’ Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, a bi-weekly publication.
The scientists describe development of a transgenic rice plant that has been genetically- engineered to fight allergies to Japanese cedar pollen, a growing public health problem in Japan that affects about 20 percent of the population. In laboratory studies, the researchers fed a steamed version of the transgenic rice and a non-transgenic version to a group of monkeys everyday for 26 weeks. At the end of the study period, the test animals did not show any health problems, in an initial demonstration that the allergy-fighting rice may be safe for consumption, the researchers say.
-- News release courtesy of American Chemical Society
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