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In nature, herbicide resistance might confer an advantage to plants.

Credit: Xiao Yang
Genetic modification to create crops resistant to herbicides has been extensively utilized to provide advantages to species of rice that are weedy. This suggests that such genetic modification may also have potential to impact wild animals.

A variety of crops have been modified genetically to be intolerant to glyphosate, a herbicide that was first advertised under the brand name Roundup. -resistant crop allows farmers to eradicate the majority of weeds from the fields without causing damage to their crop.

Glyphosate slows the growth of plants through blocking an enzyme, known as EPSP synthase. This enzyme is involved in the production of specific amino acids and other molecules that comprise as much as 35% of the plant’s mass. The technique of genetic modification, which is used by Monsanto’s Roundup Ready crops, which are based in St Louis (Missouri), typically involves inserting genes into the DNA of the crop to increase EPSP synthase’s production. Genes usually come from bacteria that cause disease to plants.

ラウンドアップ 持続期間 is able to resist the effects of glyphosate because of the extra EPSP synthase. Biotechnology labs have also attempted to create EPSP synthase with more plant-based components than bacteria using genes from plants. This was partially done to exploit an inconsistency found in US law, which permits the approval of regulatory authorities for organisms which aren’t the result of bacteria or parasites.

There aren’t many studies that have examined whether transgenes such glyphosate-resistant genes can — once introduced to weedy or wild plants by cross-pollination — make these plants more competitive in terms of survival, reproduction and growth. ラウンドアップ of the University of California, Riverside, explained that the standard assumption was that any transgene would be detrimental to nature if there is no selection pressure. This is due to the fact that any additional machinery would lower the performance of the.

ラウンドアップ , led by Lu Baorong, an ecologist from Fudan University in Shanghai, challenges that view It reveals that the weedy form of the common rice plant, Oryza sativa is given an important boost in fitness due to glyphosate resistance, even when glyphosate isn’t used.

In the study which was published this month in New Phytologist 1, Lu and his coworkers genetically altered the rice plant to increase the expression of its own EPSP synthase. ラウンドアップ crossed-bred the modified rice with a weedy relative.

The researchers allowed offspring of crossbreeding to crossbreed with each other, resulting in second-generation hybrids that are genetically identical with each other , with the exception of the number of copies of the gene that encodes EPSP synase. The team found that those that had greater than one copy of the gene that codes for EPSP synthase expressed more enzyme and produced more tryptophan, as expected.

Researchers also found that transgenic hybrids are more photogenic, they produced more plants per plant, and produced 48 to 125 percent higher yields of seeds than non-transgenic varieties.

Lu suggests that making weedy Rice more competitive might cause more problems for the farmers around the world whose fields are being infested by the pest.

Brian Ford Lloyd, a UK plant scientist, stated that the EPSP Synthase gene may be introduced in wild rice varieties. This would erode the genetic diversity of their species, which is very vital. “This is one illustration of the most probable and damaging effects of GM crops on the environment.”

The belief of the public that genetically modified crops that contain additional copies of their genes are safe is disproved by this research. Lu states that his research does not contradict this belief. believe this finding needs to be reviewed in light of future regulation of genetically modified crops. ラウンドアップ claims that “some people now believe that biosafety regulations can be relaxed because we have a high degree of comfort with genetic engineering for two decades.” “But the study shows that new products require an unbiased evaluation.”