Review: Will transgenic plants adversely affect the environment? - GreenMedInfo Summary
Will transgenic plants adversely affect the environment?
J Biosci. 2005 Sep;30(4):515-48. PMID: 16184014
Institute of Biochemistry and Physiology of Microorganisms, Russian Academy of Sciences,Pushchino, Moscow Region, 142290, Russian Federation. [email protected]
Transgenic insecticidal plants based on Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) endotoxins, on proteinase inhibitors and on lectins, and transgenic herbicide tolerant plants are widely used in modern agriculture. The results of the studies on likelihood and non-likelihood of adverse effects of transgenic plants on the environment including: (i) effects on nontarget species; (ii) invasiveness; (iii) potential for transgenes to 'escape' into the environment by horizontal gene transfer; and (iv) adverse effects on soil biota are reviewed. In general, it seems that large-scale implementation of transgenic insecticidal and herbicide tolerant plants do not display considerable negative effects on the environments and, moreover, at least some transgenic plants can improve the corresponding environments and human health because their production considerably reduces the load of chemical insecticides and herbicides.