Rats fed a lifetime diet of Monsanto’s genetically modified corn or exposed Roundup, its best selling weed killer, suffered from mammary tumors, kidney and liver damage and other serious illnesses in the first ever peer-reviewed, long-term animal study of these foods. At a press conference in London, researchers said 50 percent of male rats exposed to GMO corn and 70 percent of females died prematurely, compared with only 30 percent and 20 percent in the control group. The findings were published Tuesday in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology.
The study was hailed by proponents of Proposition 37, a California ballot measure requiring the labeling of genetically engineered foods. Gary Ruskin, campaign manager for the California Right to Know group released a statement saying:
“The results of this study are worrying. They underscore the importance of giving California families the right to know whether our food is genetically engineered, and to decide for ourselves whether we want to gamble with our health by eating GMO foods that have not been adequately studied and have not been proven safe. By requiring simple labels on genetically engineered foods, Proposition 37 gives Californians the ability to choose whether to expose ourselves and our families to any potential health risks. The right to know is fundamental, and that’s why 50 countries around the world have already enacted labeling requirements for genetically engineered food.”
Proponents of GMO labeling have long insisted that biotech companies control and suppress research, and frequently cite a Scientific American editorial to back up their case. While numerous short-term peer-reviewed animal studies have link GMOs to adverse health effects, this study is the first long-term animal feeding study that is publicly available.