Title: Looking back at safety assessment of GM food/feed: an exhaustive review of 90-day animal feeding studies

Authors: Agnès E. Ricroch; Audrey Boisron; Marcel Kuntz

Addresses: Laboratoire d'Ecologie, Systématique et Evolution, UMR 8079, Bât. 360, Université Paris-Sud, CNRS, AgroParisTech, F-91405 Orsay Cedex, France ' INRA Direction de la Valorisation / Information Scientifique et Technique, UAR 1266, Route de Saint-Cyr., F-78026 Versailles Cedex, France ' Laboratoire de Physiologie Cellulaire Végétale, UMR 5168, CEA, CNRS, INRA, Université Grenoble Alpes, 17, rue des Martyrs., F-38054 Grenoble Cedex 9, France

Abstract: All genetically modified (GM) plants must undergo a meticulous assessment of their safety before marketing. This involves comparative compositional and other phenotypic analyses between the GM line and a conventional comparator. In the European Union (EU), these comparisons have often been followed by 90-day subchronic toxicity feeding studies. We reviewed 44 peer reviewed articles describing such tests for nine crops since 1995 and 60 opinions of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) which have or not included such tests. None of these studies concluded to safety problems. Despite this fact, we noted a drift to systematically include these subchronic rodent feeding studies in the EFSA dossiers since 2009. The recent EU decision to render them mandatory despite the lack of clear scientific necessity to conduct such tests is also discussed.

Keywords: repeated-dose toxicity studies; 90-day studies; rodent feeding studies; whole food; whole feed; subchronic toxicity; safety assessment; GMO; European Food Safety Authority; EFSA; food policy; biotechnology; GM food; GM feed; animal feeding studies; genetically modified organisms; GMOs; GM plants; GM crops; European Union; EU.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBT.2014.068940

International Journal of Biotechnology, 2014 Vol.13 No.4, pp.230 - 256

Received: 27 Jun 2013
Accepted: 01 Apr 2014

Published online: 30 Apr 2015 *

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