The Ramifications of Genetic Modification Essay

The Ramifications of Genetic Modification Essay

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Food production has changed dramatically to meet the growing demand for food for the world’s rapidly increasing population. Advances in biotechnology have allowed the food industry to lower production expenses and increase profit margins by creating superior food products by way of genetic engineering. There are many dangers and risks associated with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) such as significant changes in DNA of both the genetically altered organism as well as of those who ingest them; consequently, they have caused human health problems, environmental problems, and unexpected genetic mutations.
While numerous studies on GMOs have been conducted, there is still substantial uncertainty about the potential effects on health. Some patterns that have been recognized are allergies, depletion of necessary enzymes, and infertility in consumers of GM food crops. Since the allergies are induced at a genetic level and continually reinforced by nutritional sources such as soy and corn, they can cause an immune response to both the genetically modified and unmodified versions. According to Jeffrey Smith, a consumer advocate, “GM soy drastically reduces enzymes in mice. If it also impairs your digestion, you may become sensitive and allergic to a variety of foods” (Smith). Because enzymes are biological catalysts that provide a specifically shaped platform for digestion of nutrients, foreign proteins, lipids, and carbohydrate molecules can cause allergic reactions when enzymes cannot align with them in the digestive process.
Biotechnology scientists have developed a process of altering specific plant genes to achieve desired qualities such as resistance to pests, diseases, or climate conditions. Though the techniques used are ve...

... middle of paper ... such as supporting third world countries, there are some inconsistencies with their presentation of data.
Biotechnology is a growing field with promise of helpful advances in agriculture and human health, however, there are vital consumer concerns and dangers that need to be honestly and directly addressed, rather than suppressed. With concern to potential human health hazards, environmental problems, and unintended mutations to the DNA more open research is necessary.

Works Cited

Antoniou, Michael, Claire Robinson, and John Fagan. GMO Myths and Truths. N.p. June 2012. Web. 6 Nov. 2013.
Levaux, Ari. “The Very Real Dangers of Genetically Modified Foods.” The Atlantic 9 Jan. 2012. Web. 6 Nov. 2013.
Smith, Jeffrey M. Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risk of Genetically Engineered Foods. Fairfield: Yes!, Apr. 2007. Web. 2 Nov. 2013.

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