Seeking Food Ingredients That Aren’t Gene-Altered

by jeeg 30. May 2013 23:16
Food companies big and small are struggling to replace genetically modified ingredients with conventional ones. Pressure is growing to label products made from genetically modified organisms, or “G.M.O.” In Connecticut, Vermont and Maine, at least one chamber of the state legislature has approved bills that would require the labeling of foods that contain genetically modified ingredients, and similar legislation is pending in more than two dozen other states. This weekend, r... [More]

Modified Wheat Is Discovered in Oregon

by jeeg 30. May 2013 22:53
Unapproved genetically engineered wheat has been found growing on a farm in Oregon, federal officials said Wednesday, a development that could disrupt American exports of the grain. The Agriculture Department said the wheat was of the type developed by Monsanto to be resistant to the herbicide Roundup, also known as glyphosate. Such wheat was field-tested in 16 states, including Oregon, from 1998 through 2005, but Monsanto dropped the project before the wheat was ever approved for commer... [More]

Why Efforts to Bring Extinct Species Back from the Dead Miss the Point

by jeeg 29. May 2013 00:03
“We will get woolly mammoths back.” So vowed environmentalist Stewart Brand at the TED conference in Long Beach, Calif., in February in laying out his vision for reviving extinct species. The mammoth isn't the only vanished creature Brand and other proponents of “de-extinction” want to resurrect. The passenger pigeon, Caribbean monk seal and great auk are among the other candidates—all species that blinked out at least in part because of Homo sapiens. “H... [More]

Supreme Court: US genes patent decision may depend on strands in Myriad argument

by jeeg 28. May 2013 21:43
It was obvious from the questions they asked and analogies that they dreamt up that the nine US Supreme Court justices hearing one of the most important and complex patent cases in a decade were not wholly comfortable with the subject at hand.   The question before them – whether human genes could be patented – seems straightforward on the surface. Yet as the arguments turned to talk of recombinant DNA and whether isolated DNA fragments were found in nature or were a pro... [More]

UK building DNA database in the NHS 'by stealth'

by jeeg 24. May 2013 21:00
The plan, which is backed by British Prime Minister David Cameron, involves sequencing the DNA of everyone in England and adding this information as an attachment to each person's medical file – warns campaigner In April, the Caldicott Committee, including British government chief scientist Sir Mark Walport proposed new rules for data-sharing electronic medical records. What they failed to make transparent is that genetic information including whole genomes will be integrated into m... [More]

California bill would prevent genetic-testing firms from using surreptitiously obtained DNA

by jeeg 23. May 2013 22:49
If you want to keep your DNA to yourself, be sure not to leave any stray hairs, Q-tips or underwear lying around. There are genetic testing companies out there willing to reveal your most intimate biological secrets to anybody -- without your knowledge or permission. And under California law, such genetic snooping is perfectly legal. Now, legislators in Sacramento are considering a bill to change that. Senate Bill 222, which faces a key hearing Thursday, would require a donor's consen... [More]

Cell reviewing allegations of image reuse in human embryonic stem cell cloning paper

by jeeg 23. May 2013 22:43
  Cell is looking into whether the authors of a widely hailed study published last week claiming to have turned human skin cells into embryonic stem cells manipulated images inappropriately, Retraction Watch has learned. The potential image problems came to light on PubPeer, a site designed to allow for post-publication peer review. A commenter, identified as Peer1, identified “several examples of image reuse which might be of interest to PubPeer members and readers:” ... [More]

Forensic Genetics Policy Initiative Criticizes South African DNA Database Legislation

by jeeg 23. May 2013 00:00
The Forensic Genetics Policy Initiative (FGPI) is a global human rights project, chaired by the Council for Responsible Genetics, GeneWatch UK and Privacy International, which is dedicated to ensuring that the expansion of DNA databases is consistent with human rights principles.   Today the FGPI submitted comments to the South African Parliament on the recently introduced Criminal Law (Forensic Procedures) Amendment Bill.  This bill creates a legislative framework ... [More]

The Outrageous Cost of a Gene Test

by jeeg 22. May 2013 21:37
ANGELINA JOLIE’S revelation that she had had a preventive double mastectomy was eloquent and brave. She had learned that she inherited a faulty copy of a gene, BRCA1, that put her at high risk for invasive breast cancer as well as ovarian cancer. Now women everywhere are asking: Should I get the same test? What will it cost? Only one in about 400 women carry mutations to BRCA1 or to a related gene BRCA2, though such hereditary defects are implicated in between 5 percent and 10 perce... [More]

Pioneer in DNA testing quits NY Medical Examiner’s Office over lab violations

by jeeg 17. May 2013 22:15
A top deputy at the medical examiner’s office who has been lauded for her work in DNA testing resigned amid revelations that she sidestepped lab protocol in at least two criminal cases, the Daily News has learned. The abrupt April 19 departure of Theresa Caragine is the latest snafu to befall the office and has already affected ongoing cases in the Bronx and Brooklyn, according to court papers. Hundreds of rape cases the office examined were already under review due to potentially ... [More]
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