GMOs: The State of the Science
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September 15, 2016
Any discussion of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) is fraught with difficulty, not least of which is the definition. The Non GMO Project describes them as “organisms whose genetic material has been artificially manipulated in a laboratory through genetic engineering,” but there are others, see Leandra’s AHS 16 poster for more details. Leandra Brettner is a PhD candidate at the University of Washington department of bioengineering, and in this interview we discuss artificial selection, DNA delivery methods, integration and mutation breeding together with their safety concerns. One might argue that GM is a technique, and that each application should be tested for safety. In this interview I argue to Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s point that GMOs fall into a special class of problem where the potential harm is systemic (rather than localised) and the consequences can involve total irreversible ruin, such as the extinction of human beings or all life on the planet. Here’s the outline of this interview with Leandra…