Research Question
“Evaluation of the commercialization of Bt-Corn breeds: how it is both economically efficient and overall beneficial for the environment.”

Abstract This paper discusses and evaluates both the negative and positive aspects and raised controversial issues regarding Bt-Corn, a transgenic maize developed through genetic engineering and biotechnology methods, and will finally conclude that the commercialization of Bt-Corn breeds for the past 14 years have been both economically advantageous and beneficial for the environment. The purpose of this paper is to further educate and inform the general audience regarding issues relating with genetically modified organisms and will try to disprove negative speculation and ambiguity with statistical data and experimental evidence.

Introduction Recent development and advances in the field of biotechnology and genetic engineering has enabled scientists today to improve crop varieties through alteration of their most fundamental building blocks, their DNA. These alterations of the genetic material allow scientists and researchers to develop ‘new species’ and breeds of organisms which posses certain altered favored traits, which would not otherwise naturally exist in the organism. (Peairs, 2007) However, there is much ambiguity and controversies surrounding the whole field of genetic engineering of organisms and their commercialization. Bt-corn, a breed of transgenic maize whose genetic material has been altered to include the ability to produce a certain toxin that has specific insecticidal property against pests, has been commercialized now for several years in the US and also in several other countries such as Canada, Germany, Spain, Argentina, Honduras, South Africa and the Philippines. (Wu, 2006) The prefix ‘Bt’ from Bt-Corn originates from Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), a species of soil bacterium that produces the insecticidal crystal protein or delta endotoxins, toxins that kill crop pests.



Bibliography: Aroian, R. (n.d.). History of Bt. UCSD - Aroian Lab. Brookes, G. (2006, October). GM crops: the first ten years - Global socio-economic and environmental impacts. 1-106. Gertsberg, D. (2009, August 30). Introduction To The Regulation of Genetically Modified Foods by the FDA . Retrieved May 2, 2010, from GMO Journal: Food Safety Politics: http://gmo-journal.com/index.php/2009/08/30/introduction-to-regulation-of-gm-foods-by-fda/ Hellmich, R. L. (2008, March 8). Monarch Butterflies and Bt Corn. 1-3. Hofte, H. (1989). Insecticidal Crystal Proteins of Bacilllus thuringiensis. MICROBIOLOGICAL REVIEWS , 53, 242-255. James, C. (2002). Global Review of Commercialized Transgenic Crops: 2001. ISAAA Briefs (26), 1-184. Peairs, F. (2007, April). Bt Corn: Health and the Environment. Colorado State University Extension . Turner, L. (2007). Playing With Our Food. Better Nutrition , 69 (4), 30-33. Wu, F. (2006). Mycotoxin reduction in Bt corn: potential economic, health, and regulatory impacts . Transgenic Research , 277-289.

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