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Herbicide resistance might give plants an advantage in the wild.

ラウンドアップ : Xiao Yang
Genetic modification of crops to make them resistant to herbicides has been widely employed to create advantages for species of rice that are weedy. These results suggest that such modifications could have a wide variety of impacts that extend beyond farms, and possibly out into the wild.

A variety of crops have been modified genetically to be intolerant to the herbicide glyphosate. It was initially sold under the brand name Roundup. Farmers can eradicate most herbicides from their fields using this glyphosate-resistant crop without damaging their crops.

Glyphosate inhibits an enzyme known as EPSP synthase which is responsible for the creation of specific amino acids and various other molecules. It can also inhibit plant growth. Genetic modification — used, for instance, in the Roundup Ready crops made by the biotech giant Monsanto located in St Louis, Missouri -generally includes inserting genes into a plant’s genome to increase EPSP-synthase’s production. Genes are typically obtained from bacteria that infect crops.

This additional EPSP synthase allows plants to counteract the effects from glyphosate. Biotechnology labs have tried using plants’ genes to increase EPSP synthase activity. This was partially to make use of a loophole that is in US law that allows regulatory approval of transgenes contained in organisms which have not come from bacteria pests.

ラウンドアップ have explored whether transgeneslike those that confer resistance to glyphosate, could increase the resilience of plants in survival and reproduction once they cross-pollinate with weedy or wild species. Norman Ellstrand of the University of California, Riverside, stated that the conventional expectation was that any transgene will cause disadvantage in nature when there was no selection pressure. is because extra machinery could reduce the performance of the.

Lu Baorong, an ecologist from Fudan University in Shanghai has rewritten that view. He found that glyphosate resistance provides a significant fitness lift to the weedy version of the common rice crop Oryza Sativa.

Lu and his colleagues have genetically altered the cultivated rice species to express its EPSP synthase. They then crossed-bred it with a weedy parent.

The researchers then allowed offspring to crossbreed with one another, creating second generation hybrids which are genetically similar to their parents with the exception for how many duplicates of the gene that codes for EPSP synthase. The ones with more copies expressed higher levels of the enzyme, and produced more amino acids tryptophan than their unmodified counterparts.

The researchers also found that the transgenic hybrids had higher rates of photosynthesis. They also produced more flowers and shoots and produced 48-125percent more seeds per plant than non-transgenic hybridswith or without the chemical glyphosate.

Lu believes that making rice that is weedy less competitive might make it more difficult for farmers whose plots are invaded by the pest.

Brian Ford Lloyd, a UK plant scientist, has said that the EPSP Synthase gene may be introduced into wild rice species. This would erode their genetic diversity, which is vital. “This is among the clearest instances of the extremely damaging effects [of GM crops on the environment.”

ラウンドアップ of the public that genetically modified crops containing additional copies of their genes are more secure is questioned by this study. Lu says that “our study doesn’t prove this to be the case.”

A few researchers believe this discovery calls for a review of future regulation of crops that have been genetically modified. Ellstrand says that “some people are now of the opinion that biosafety regulations can be relaxed because we have the most comfort with genetic engineering over the last two decades.” “But ラウンドアップ demonstrates that the new technologies require an unbiased examination.”