1st December, 2005
A simple experiment by a Russian scientist to see if eating GM soya influenced the offspring of mice, could threaten the multi-billion dollar GM industry.
Irina Ermakova, a leading scientist at the Institute of Higher Nervous Activity and Neurophysiology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS), added GM soy flour to the diet of female rats. Other females were fed non-GM soy or no soy at all. The experimental diet began two weeks before the rats conceived and continued through pregnancy and nursing.
Ermakova’s first surprise came when her pregnant rats started giving birth. Some pups from GM-fed mothers were quite a bit smaller. After 2 weeks, 36% of them weighed less than 20 grams, compared to about 6% from the other groups.
But the real shock came when the rats started dying. Within three weeks, 25 of the 45 (55.6%) rats from the GM soy group died, compared to only 3 of 33 (9%) from the non-GM soy group and 3 of 44 (6.8%) from the non-soy controls.
Ermakova preserved several major organs from the mother rats and offspring, drew up designs for a detailed organ analysis, created plans to repeat and expand the feeding trial, and promptly ran out of research money. The $70,000 needed was not expected to arrive for a year. Therefore, when she was invited to present her research at a symposium organized by the National Association for...
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