The significance of the successfully developed GM food vaccine *
Wise Up Journal
By Gabriel O’Hara
A string of news articles on vaccines contained in GM food have hit the media over the last few days. The articles talked about research being carried out to see if it would work. But that is exactly what it is, re-search. Current scientists, on a lower level, re-doing the work that has been proven to work at an equivalent or higher level years ago. The New Scientist article below publicly reported in 2005 that Arizona State University’s re-search from 2003 successfully created “Genetically engineered potatoes containing a hepatitis B vaccine” which caused human volunteers to produce a “large number of extra antibodies”. The research shows that GM food can be used to pass genetic material to humans and cause changes in the human body.
By Andy Coghlan
Genetically engineered potatoes containing a hepatitis B vaccine have successfully boosted immunity in their first human trials.
But the newly-published study missed a moving target - drug developers are now abandoning their quest for vaccines contained in staple foods like bananas, tomatoes or potatoes.
developers have changed tack to avoid any possibility of vaccine-laden food straying into shops or markets. If this occurred, it could be unwittingly eaten by consumers, with unpredictable results.
Instead, developers are now focusing on making vaccines in the safely edible leaves of plants not on sale as food.
“We’ve not worked with potatoes for two years now,” says Charles Arntzen at Arizona State University in Tempe, US, who led the potato study and is a veteran of the decade-long bid to produce GM vaccines in foods. “We don’t say ‘edible’ vaccine any more - we say ‘heat-stable oral vaccines’.”
Despite abandoning the potatoes, Arntzen says he is proud of the results, and that they support the principle of oral vaccination.
In the study, the volunteers all ate finely-chopped chunks of raw potato. Some ate potatoes in which a major surface protein of the hepatitis B virus had been produced, while others received unaltered potatoes.
More than 60% of the volunteers who had three doses of the vaccine made a large number of extra antibodies against the viral protein, as did 53% on two doses. None of the volunteers eating ordinary potato generated new antibodies.
“We are very interested in the approach, and these results are very encouraging,” says Martin Friede at the World Health Organization’s Initiative for Vaccine Research.
The highest levels of experiments has proven not to be in universities but on the military and corporate levels. Even so universities and other lower levels get funded by governments for research. On July 12th 2004 a BBC article titled “EU funding for GM plant vaccines” informed us that the EU had invested millions of Euro into the consortium Pharma-Planta to develop genetically altered vaccine plants.
Drugs and genetically engineered food, an obvious connection
Text from a Biotechnology Institute publication “Your World Biotechnology and you” (which looks and reads like it was designed for teenagers): “Researchers pinpointed part of the cholera bacterium that the human immune system can recognize […] Some scientists began to brainstorm about plants. Since plants naturally make a number of different compounds, could they be reprogrammed to make edible vaccines? Scientists found the genes that make that bacterial part […] they put those genes into potatoes to turn potatoes into a handy vaccine […] But there is a snag. People don’t eat raw potatoes. So scientists cooked them and found that some of the vaccine still survives.” - Your World Biotechnology and you, Volume 10, Issue 1, Page 12
Searle, a pharmaceuticals company, was acquired by the Monsanto corporation in 1985. Monsanto is the world’s leading genetically modified food corporation and the creator of the infamous chemical Agent Orange sprayed by the U.S. military across South Vietnam (which still causes debilitating birth defects today). When governments try to ban Monsanto’s GM food the corporation sues that government, as was the case last month with the German Government, reported by Reuters. Searle pharmaceuticals produced an infamous product called aspartame under the brand name NutraSweet, which is used today in sugar free products. With regards to the U.S. military: Donald Rumsfeld, 13th Secretary of Defense (1975 to 1977) and 21st Secretary of Defense (2001 to 2006), was the CEO of Searle from 1977 to 1985. Rumsfeld was credited as having an influential role in Monsanto’s acquisition of Searle.
It sure does make you feel safe knowing who is behind the GM maize in the public’s mini apple pies and all the other genetically altered food people eat without checking. In most countries, if someone bothered to check, it is impossible for them to know if they are eating genetically altered food as the ingredients legally don’t have to be labelled as GM. A wonderful world?
One of the hailed advantages of genetically modified food consumed by the public is that they are engineered to be toxic to pests that eat them and are genetically altered not to die from being sprayed by advanced patented Monstanto plant killing chemicals. Farmers are led to believe that these little biological weapons (to pests only is the corporate mantra) will save them money. Another one of the many problems is that they cross pollinate with crops thought not to be GM.
By Lucy Elkins
Why are so many adults suddenly getting allergies?
A report published last month found the number of children with allergies had tripled in the past decade to 40 per cent.
An allergy occurs when the body over-reacts to the presence of something harmless and produces antibodies and chemicals such as histamine in response.
It is the body’s way of trying to get rid of the perceived invader as rapidly as possible.
Typically, allergies start in childhood, when the immature immune system is more likely to over-react, but often improve in time. So why are adults now being affected for the first time?
‘No one truly understands what prompts allergies in later life,’ says Isobel Skypala, a specialist allergy dietician at London’s Royal Brompton Hospital.
‘Hormonal fluctuations also have an effect on the severity of allergies’
‘In the case of food allergies, it may be partly due to the wide range of foods available these days. But we are also seeing more severe reactions in adults to plant foods that have long been part of the UK diet, such as lettuce,’ she says.
Adults who already have an allergy are also increasingly developing further allergies (’multiple allergies’).
All agenda’s from new taxes to one child policies are jumping on the CO2 bandwagon as a vehicle justify and accelerate them. The genetically modified food agenda is no different. Biotechnology Institute: “Many other foods – potatoes, wheat, oats – also use CO2 inefficiently. Rice belongs to an old line of plants that developed when our atmosphere had more carbon dioxide (CO2) than today. Newer plants, such as corn, evolved when the atmosphere had less CO2. They use CO2 more efficiently by using a kind of “CO2 pump”. Researchers put the genes for the ‘pump’ proteins in rice.” - Your World Biotechnology and you, Volume 10, Issue 1, Page 11