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Post by Rogue on Fri Nov 20, 2015 7:35 am


Behold the 'Frankenfish' – the world's first genetically-altered animal
MARY CLARE JALONICK
November 20 2015

Frankenfish 1448007609039Darret & Mackay Photography-Pictured is a genetically engineered AquAdvantage salmon (back) and non-modified sibling of the same age in front.


The Food and Drug Administration on Thursday approved genetically modified salmon, the first such altered animal allowed for human consumption in the United States, which critics have dubbed "Frankenfish".

The Obama administration had stalled in approving the fast-growing salmon for more than five years amid consumer concerns about eating genetically-modified foods. But the agency said on Thursday that the fish is safe to eat.

There are "no biologically relevant differences in the nutritional profile of AquAdvantage Salmon compared to that of other farm-raised Atlantic salmon", said the FDA.

Critics worry that the fish could cause human allergies and the eventual decimation of the natural salmon population if it escapes and breeds in the wild. Others believe breeding engineered animals is an ethical issue.

AquAdvantage Salmon was created by AquaBounty. Ron Stotish, AquaBounty's chief executive, said in a statement that the fish is a "game-changer that brings healthy and nutritious food to consumers in an environmentally responsible manner without damaging the ocean and other marine habitats".

The fish grows twice as fast as normal salmon, so it reaches market size more quickly.

It has an added growth hormone from the Pacific Chinook salmon that allows the fish to produce growth hormone all year long.

The engineers were able to keep the hormone active by using another gene from an eel-like fish called an ocean pout that acts like an "on" switch for the hormone. Typical Atlantic salmon produce the growth hormone for only part of the year.

The FDA has also said the fish is unlikely to harm the environment. The fish would be bred female and sterile, though a very small percentage might still be able to breed. The company has argued the potential for escape is low.

There is no evidence that the foods would be unsafe, but for some people, it's an ethical issue.

Some retailers have pledged not to sell the salmon, and it's still unclear whether the public will have an appetite for the fish if it is approved.

Genetic engineering is already widely-used for crops, but the government until now has not considered allowing the consumption of modified animals.

Although the potential benefits and profits are huge, many people have qualms about manipulating the genetic code of other living creatures.
http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/americas/74268864/behold-the-frankenfish--the-worlds-first-geneticallyaltered-animal
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Post by Kaere on Fri Nov 20, 2015 7:49 am

Interesting Smile

I've often wondered, and it's probably just me not thinking it through very well... but what's the difference between genetic modification done by people and genetic modification done over time (ie evolution). Is it just the time or the fact that a specific trait has been chosen? I mean, back in medieval times wheat used to have really long straw, people could get lost in a wheatfield. Over the last century it's been selectively bred to reduce the length of the straw so it's much shorter, two feet or so. We have selectively bred winter wheat here, wheat that grows faster in our shorter growing season. Animals have gone through the same sorts of things through breeding. Is that not also genetic modification? Why is one done in a lab quickly worse than one done over time?
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Post by Solace on Fri Nov 20, 2015 9:30 am

(leaving your question for someone else to answer K, as i don't have an answer at this time)

I just wish we would leave things alone.. it freaks me out to be honest..I saw this on the news this morning and just thought.. no!
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Post by Rockhopper on Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:43 am

There is a difference Ka. When humans modify a plant or animal they are enhancing a trait that is already there.

You're analogy of the short stemmed wheat is an example. Wheat naturally grows on long straws but there will be some the grow short ones. Keep the seed from the shorties and re-plant them next season. About half will be short and the other half be long. Collect only the short seed again and so on. Eventually you will have wheat on short straws.

Frankie the Frankenfish is different because they have inserted genes for another different animal (the Pout - a kind of ocean eel). In the wild that eel gene would not be part of the fish. That is a major difference.

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Post by Rogue on Fri Nov 20, 2015 4:23 pm


I'm not sure I'd be racing to try Frankenfish, and seeing I'm no fan of fish anyway that wouldn't be hard. But whats next.. enormous fast growing cattle? I might just stick to frankfurts at this stage.
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Post by Lenzabi on Fri Nov 20, 2015 5:02 pm

That and no long term testing done to make sure of no side effects of the ones who eat the fish. Like the way Monsanto does their crops.

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Post by Rogue on Fri Nov 20, 2015 8:38 pm


Yes Len, I would be thinking if there were going to be problems, that they may not show up with us, but possibly more likely in the next generation.
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Post by Rockhopper on Sat Nov 21, 2015 3:22 am

That's the problem. Once it's out there it can't be taken back!

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Post by Agartha on Sat Nov 21, 2015 5:09 am

I am always a bit worried about stuff like this. It is farmed in a controlled environment and hopefully it will stay like this, but if one gets out then the whole salmon species will change.

I don't think it can affect us anyway, biologically speaking eating fish that has altered DNA will not affect our bodies or DNAs... DNA doesn't survive stomach acid!

Scientists say this salmon tastes and has the same nutritional value as normal salmon, but when they start selling it to the public (because they will), they should be legally force to write a label that say GM fish.
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Post by Lenzabi on Sat Nov 21, 2015 6:52 pm

Yeah, the push through was fat from the FDA as it should have been more time of testing, some of the GMO crops the gene material seems to survive and absorb, so traits worried about were self insecticide plants, people with gut biology making BT like poisons from their gut biorganisms as w3e have plant and animal bacterial microbes that help us digest things.

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Post by Agartha on Sun Nov 22, 2015 4:32 am

Len, like I said on my post above: DNA doesn't survive stomach acid. How can modified DNA affect us? It won't be absorbed through digestion... this is why I don't think it can affects us, and this from a woman who is against genetically modified food.

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Post by Stirky on Sun Nov 22, 2015 6:07 am

Although this sounds like a bad idea to have GM animals, to be quite honest humans have been doing this for centuries, but like as Kaere said taking more time doing so. All the breeds of modern dogs, cats, horses, cattle, sheep, pigs etc have all been bred by humans to have specific characteristics and conformation to suit a specific purpose. These breeds just would not exist without human intervention. Also certain breeds are very strict about breed standards and only certain animals that show really strong breed standards are allowed to be bred from to protect that breed.

So making salmon bigger by introducing genes from another breed of fish, although this has been done in a lab, is really no different from how they bred Thoroughbred horses for speed and stamina. It just took longer.
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Post by Stirky on Sun Nov 22, 2015 6:16 am

But saying that I do not agree with anything GM, I think they should leave it all alone, GM is taking it a step too far. When you make changes using natural methods (animals or crops) you are leaving mother nature with some say in the matter. Things made in a lab are forced.
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Post by Lenzabi on Sun Nov 22, 2015 6:31 am

There are still concerns with the speed of which these Modified organisms, plant and animal alike have changed, unlike Mendelian genetics which was the breeding and careful selection of traits to be made stable through breeding what could interbreed.

But we have crops that make insecticides while they grow, Monsanto is notorious for fast tests of 90days in-house, not using a neutral laboratory to check for issues that may pop up in these crops and animals. Most in-depth food studies are 2yrs or more, not 90days, and that then the FCA has to also make them spend years of double checking when the frankenfish was rushed through.

as for genetics and digestion, I found this surprising, and it was also mentioned regarding how GMO crops could affect us.

http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/questions/question/1000345/

"So, yes, DNA can survive transit through the human digestive tract and other organisms can actually incorporate it which I think that's absolutely stunning. "


So, the plant like Bacteria in your guts might take up making said Insecticide from the genetics they took in from GMO crops of that design, hence why I feel longer indepepndent studies should be conducted, not the company in house sped through fast ones they pull.

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Post by Agartha on Sun Nov 22, 2015 11:29 am

@Lenzabi wrote:
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/questions/question/1000345/

"So, yes, DNA can survive transit through the human digestive tract and other organisms can actually incorporate it which I think that's absolutely stunning. "

So, the plant like Bacteria in your guts might take up making said Insecticide from the genetics they took in from GMO crops of that design, hence why I feel longer indepepndent studies should be conducted, not the company in house sped through fast ones they pull.

Wow... OMG! I thought that was biologically impossible.......
Shocked
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Post by Stargate on Sun Nov 22, 2015 12:00 pm

There is still so much to know about DNA, especially when it comes to time. We do not know the micro/nano developments when humans manipulate genes. 

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Post by Lenzabi on Mon Nov 23, 2015 3:07 am

@Agartha wrote:
@Lenzabi wrote:
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/questions/question/1000345/

"So, yes, DNA can survive transit through the human digestive tract and other organisms can actually incorporate it which I think that's absolutely stunning. "

So, the plant like Bacteria in your guts might take up making said Insecticide from the genetics they took in from GMO crops of that design, hence why I feel longer indepepndent studies should be conducted, not the company in house sped through fast ones they pull.

Wow... OMG! I thought that was biologically impossible.......
Shocked


Yeah, changes the perspective on "You are what you eat" Ags! Shocked

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Post by Rogue on Mon Nov 23, 2015 9:39 am


Ughhhhhhhhh.... silent
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Post by Stargate on Mon Nov 23, 2015 1:32 pm

On short term basis we might get away with it, but long term, we will definitely change.
We now not only have Franken Stein, we have Franken kind. Waaaaaaaaaaaa

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Post by Agartha on Tue Nov 24, 2015 12:03 pm

Ok, I have been reading about DNA and digestion and the story is different than I thought. DNA was not absorbed in the intestines: bacteria that live in our guts bonded with a microbe that lives in seaweed. This microbe helped the gut bacteria in Japanese people evolve so that they digest nori as this bacteria releases an enzyme that facilitates the digestion of algae (nori wraps sushi). So the DNA did not pass from the stomach to the blood: the microbe  was assimilated by our own bodies as it helps them function better... we assimilated the microbe and thus its DNA.

http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100407/full/news.2010.169.html

(This is not the only case where our bodies have assimilated foreign DNA to its advantage: a retrovirus helped mammals' placental development. See:http://schaechter.asmblog.org/schaechter/2014/06/retroviruses-the-placenta-and-the-genomic-junk-drawer.html )

Now, this means that eating Frankenfish cannot pass its DNA onto our blood and change our DNA as cooking kills all the microbes that may be in the fish. DNA is digested into sugars, phosphates etc. Certain microbes are obviously immune to our stomach acid. This means that even if cooking didn't destroy any microbes present in the fish, we could assimilate microbes DNA over time, and not the actual fish DNA  as we digest that.

Right or wrong? Please discuss as I am trying to understand this.
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