Revisiting the flawed GM corn study
In September, many scientists were surprised to see a paper titled “Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize” published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology. Based on very weak scientific data, the paper’s authors claimed that genetically modified corn caused tumor growth in rats. Researchers in the field quickly pointed out that the data were flawed. The study had a very small control group and seemed to ignore the well-known biology of a common rat strain.
Now Food and Chemical Toxicology has begun publishing the many responses that came in. In their letters, researchers show exactly what was wrong with the study’s design and statistics. Several scientists add that the GM corn study also went against international standards for animal use in scientific research.
“I urge you to take adequate measures to keep the high standard quality of publications that come to your journal,” writes Lucia de Souza. “This paper as it is now, presents poor quality science and dubious ethics.”
Read the responses:
Ollivier L. (2012). A Comment on “Séralini, G.-E., et al. Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize. Food Chem. Toxicol. (2012).” Food and Chemical Toxicology DOI: 10.1016/j.fct.2012.10.045
Wager R, Lerayer A, Fedoroff N, Giddings V, Strauss SH, Leaver C, Shantharam S, Potrykus I, Fellous M, Burachik M, Jany KD, Trewavas A, Kameswara C, Prakash CS, Miller HI, Bradford K, Cetiner S, McHughen A, De Stefano-Beltrán L, Chassy BM, AlMomin S, Newell-McGloughlin M, Ammnann K, Herring RJ, de Souza L. (2012). Letter to the editor. Food and Chemical Toxicology DOI: 10.1016/j.fct.2012.10.047
Grunewald B, Bury J. (2012). Comment on ‘‘Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a 4 Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize’’ by Séralini et al. Food and Chemical Toxicology DOI: 10.1016/j.fct.2012.10.051