GENTECH archive


SV: More on Bt

But again, the same article gives reasons  -  to do with agribusiness methods  -  why these different Bacilli might in fact meet and swap DNA.
To wit:
Others are not reassured, however. While separate territories keep the bacteria apart in nature, they fear modern agriculture might bring the different species together. Artificially growing and spreading billions of extra Bt in sprays might cause events that are vanishingly rare in nature to occur often enough to spawn dangerous hybrids, says Andrup. "We should certainly remove the conjugation system from commercial strains," he says.

Seligy notes that some commercial Bt strains grow at mammalian body temperature and pH. Kimothy Smith of Northern Arizona University points to what are now nearly forgotten experiments in the 1940s, which showed that B. anthracis could grow in insects--where it could encounter vegetative Bt. In western Europe, anthrax has been eradicated. But recent outbreaks in Montana, Alberta and the former Soviet Union show it has not gone away. '

-----Opprinnelig melding-----
Til: gene tech list server <>
Dato: 17. desember 1999 20:07
Emne: RE: More on Bt

from the same article
It's an alarming scenario. However, Jackson thinks it is unlikely to happen because the bacilli rarely meet in the vegetative or "growing" state needed for plasmids to be swapped. Bt usually grows only in its insect host, B. cereus in soil, B. anthracis in mammals. This makes it extremely unlikely that Bt will ever swap dangerous DNA with its Bacillus cousins, says Jackson.
-----Original Message-----
From: Dorothy Bowes []
Sent: Thursday, December 16, 1999 4:07 AM
To: gene tech list server
Subject: More on Bt

The following is the first two paragraphs from an article by Deborah McKenzie called Friend or foe in New Scientist October 9, 1999 p. 22