Submitted to: Book of Abstracts for the West Virginia Academy of Sciences Meeting Program
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: July 18, 2006
Publication Date: August 31, 2006
Citation: Bassett, C.L. 2006. Addressing Public Concerns about GMOs . Book of Abstracts for the West Virginia Academy of Sciences Meeting Program. Technical Abstract: The introduction of genetic engineering technology to agriculture has raised concerns in the public sector regarding the safety of applying this technology to the food supply. Concerns focus on two major issues: human/animal health and environmental risks. Such concerns have arisen in part because of the difficulty in educating the public on topics with the scope and complexity represented by genetic engineering technology. This talk defines risks, real or perceived, associated with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and compares them to similar risks found in conventional breeding programs and crop production systems. Some of the myths that have arisen around GMOs are addressed, and both sides of the subject are explored in the context of scientists as producers and consumers of the new technology. Ways in which scientists are currently improving methodology to avoid or minimize risks is discussed.