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Wild plants could be given herbicide resistance.

Credit Xiao Yang
It has been demonstrated that a genetic modification technique, which is widely used to make crops resistant to herbicides, confers advantages on the rice that is weedy. This suggests that this genetic modification may also have potential to affect wild animals.

Many varieties of crops are modified genetically to be resistant to glyphosate, a herbicide that was first advertised under the brand name Roundup. This allows farmers to remove the majority of the weeds that grow in their fields without causing harm to their crops.

Glyphosate can inhibit plant growth by inhibiting EPSP synase which is an enzyme that plays a role in the creation of amino acids, as well as other chemical compounds that make up about 35% of the plant’s mass. Genetic modification, such as the Roundup Ready crops manufactured by Monsanto in St. Louis, Missouri, involves inserting genes into the genetic code to increase EPSP production. The genes are typically derived from bacteria infected with plants.

The extra EPSP synase allows for the plant to resist the harmful effects of glyphosate. ラウンドアップ Biotechnology laboratories are attempting to use genes from plants instead of bacteria to increase EPSP synthase. This is mainly due to the US law allows regulatory approval that allows organisms that carry transgenes to get accepted.

Few studies have looked into the possibility that transgenes, like those that confer resistance the chemical glyphosate can help plants to be more resilient in survival and reproduction once they cross-pollinate with wild or weedy species. Norman Ellstrand of the University of California, Riverside, stated that the conventional expectation was that any transgene could be detrimental to nature if there was no selection pressure. This is due to the fact that any additional machinery would lower the performance of the.

But now a study led by Lu Baorong, an ecologist from Fudan University in Shanghai, disproves that belief: it shows that the weedy form of the common rice crop, Oryza sativa, gets an important boost in fitness due to the resistance to glyphosate even when glyphosate isn’t applied.

Their research was published in 1. Lu and his colleagues genetically modified cultivated rice to increase its EPSP synthase activity and crossed it with a weedy relative.

The researchers allowed offspring of cross-breeding to mix with one another, resulting in second-generation hybrids that are genetically identical to each other , with the exception of the amount of copies of the gene that encodes EPSP synase. The team found that those that had more copies of the gene that encodes EPSP synthase had more enzyme expression and also produced more tryptophan in line with what was expected. Researchers also discovered that transgenic plants were more photosynthesis-intensive, produced more flowers, and produced 48-125percent less seeds per plant than nontransgenic hybrids. This was despite the fact that glyphosate was not present.

Lu states that making weedy crops more competitive may increase the difficulties it causes to farmers around the world who have crops infected by the insect. Brian Ford Lloyd, a UK plant scientist, said that the EPSP Synthase gene may be introduced in wild rice varieties. This could threaten the genetic diversity of their species, which is vital. “This is among the clearest examples of extremely plausible damaging consequences [of GM crops] on the environment.”

The public belief that genetically-modified crops that contain additional copies of their genes are safe is challenged by this study.,2084008038,2084034075&rewrite_ok_wand_re_search=1 Lu claims that the study doesn’t support this view.

ラウンドアップ Some researchers believe this finding calls for a review of future regulation of genetically modified crops. Ellstrand says that some people believe that biosafety regulations could be relaxed given the past over two decades of genetic engineering. The study does not prove that new products are safe.