From MSUToday: GMOs 101
This article was originally published by Michigan State University. The full story and link can be found at the bottom.
An online search for “GMO” returns more than 88 million results — a tangled mess of frightening images, dense data, skepticism, insulting comments and conflicting claims and counterclaims. For the average consumer, separating reputable sources from propaganda is tough, if not impossible.
What is a genetically modified organism, or GMO?
Even the answer to the question can be controversial.
At its most basic, genetic modification is the process by which changes occur in an organism’s genome. Nature is perpetually modifying the genetics of every organism in an effort to help the organism adapt to its changing environment.
“It’s important to understand that all organisms — not just those that are the basis of foods — are genetically modified in some way, shape or form,” says Brad Day, a professor and associate department chair for research in Michigan State University’s Department of Plant, Soil and Microbial Sciences. “They are genetically modified by persisting in the environment. Radiation from the sun can induce changes in the genome, for example…”
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