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A good use for GM?
YOUR columnist Kate Lock won’t like this, but might GM be a useful technology? For instance, mosquitoes genetically modified to be resistant to the parasite that causes malaria might help provide a solution to this disease.
The US also wants to introduce sterile GM mosquitoes to combat the spread of dengue fever in the States.
If milder winters allow the spread of insect-borne disease in the UK, then GM could be useful.
A devastating virus carried by an Asian bug threatens world citrus crops, and we are familiar with ash dieback here in the UK. Maybe GM could provide an answer.
The Rothamsted Experimental Station is carrying out useful research that can protect plants (wheat) from aphids by releasing a pheromone from their leaves which deters attack, again using GM. This reduces pesticide use.
However where I draw the line is the use of GM to turn a fast buck. For example, the GM salmon programmed to grow at a ridiculous rate, or the use of herbicide-resistant GM crops, of which the genes have now given rise to herbicide resistant super-weeds.
I think we should have a public ethics and regulatory body in place.
Chris Clayton, Hempland Drive, York.
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