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9-Misc: New GE Report: Genetic Discoveries-Societal Dilemmas

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-------------------------------- GENET-news --------------------------------

TITLE:  ICSU Announces Release of New Genetics, Food and Agriculture:
        Genetic Discoveries-Societal Dilemmas
SOURCE: International Council for Science, France, Press Release
DATE:   June 10, 2003

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ICSU Announces Release of New Genetics, Food and Agriculture: Genetic
Discoveries-Societal Dilemmas

PARIS, FRANCE--The International Council for Science (ICSU) today
announced the release of a new report entitled New Genetics, Food and
Agriculture: Genetic Discoveries - Societal Dilemmas. A synthesis of more
than 50 science-based reviews, the report assesses the risks and benefits
of applying new genetic discoveries to food and agriculture.

"This report is based on thorough examination of reviews prepared by
national academies of sciences, international organizations, and private
agencies over the past three years (2000 - 2002)", says author Dr.
Gabrielle Persley of the Doyle Foundation. "We've analysed key issues,
identified areas of scientific convergence and divergence, and
highlighted gaps in knowledge that need to be addressed through further

In relation to societal concerns about genetically modified foods and
other genetically modified organisms, the report addresses five key questions:
-- Who needs GM foods?
-- Are GM foods safe to eat?
-- Will GMOs affect the environment?
-- Are the regulations adequate?
-- Will GMOs affect trade?

The report was simultaneously launched today in print and on the Internet
(, making it a readily available resource tool for
scientists, policy makers, and other stakeholders. It is supported by an
extensive annotated bibliography, with the electronic version providing
direct links to original reviews. ICSU will update the website every six
months to ensure that users can easily find and utilize the latest data
and information. CD-ROM copies will be available shortly for individuals
who do not have easy access to the Internet.

Dr. Carthage Smith, Deputy Executive Director of ICSU says "Putting this
material into the hands of people around the globe will help them to
understand the issues and inform policy development and future research."

To view the report online, visit

Founded in 1931, the International Council for Science (ICSU) is a non-
governmental organization representing a global membership that includes
both national scientific bodies (101 members) and international
scientific unions (27 members).

Through this international network, ICSU coordinates interdisciplinary
research to address major issues of relevance to both science and
society. In addition, the Council actively advocates for freedom in the
conduct of science, promotes equitable access to scientific data and
information, and facilitates science education and capacity building.


Marilyn Smith
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