Saturday, 5 March 2011

Impact of GM crops on world agriculture scenario

Probably not a step in plant science has been, in such a short time, far-reaching consequences on agriculture, as the method described in 1983 for the genetic modification of plants through genetic engineering. In 2005, these GM varieties account for 60% of the soybean crop in the world, 14% corn, 28% cotton and 18% of rape between 2003 and 2005, the overall increase in housing throughout the world intended to GM crops was 33%. This clearly shows that the application of genetic engineering in agriculture has been a great economic success.

Genetic modification of crops to date have focused on the production of varieties to minimize crop losses due to weeds, insects and the production of resistant varieties to reduce losses to insect damage. recent developments dealing with the protection against viral and fungal infections, increased tolerance to drought and salinity, the formation of male sterile plants for the generation of hybrid production, and improving the nutritional quality of crops, such as changing the composition of fatty acids in oilseeds.

The advent of genetically modified seeds and plants to increase productivity and reduce crop losses is an advantage for countries like India, in terms of food security and the fight against hunger and poverty. The government must also ensure adequate and transparent policy framework for the emergence of a comprehensive legislation on the industry and safeguards in order to avoid possible pitfalls.

rapid progress in this field of agricultural biotechnology has received and opened new doors for scientists, businesses and policy makers to explore the possibilities of using technology in agriculture. Today, even in developing countries, land is increasingly cultivated variety of a growing number of GM crops. Research efforts are under way to genetically modify most of the plants with high economic value, such as cereals, fruits, vegetables, etc. The rapid advances in biotechnology and has opened new market opportunities for scientists and society to explore the possibility of use technology in agriculture. Today, even in developing countries, land is increasingly cultivated variety of a growing number of GM crops. Research efforts are under way to genetically modify most of the plants with high economic value, such as cereals, fruits, vegetables, etc. challenge for countries like India is to reap the benefits of new technologies and protect their interests through various measures. The challenge of producing more food grains to feed the growing population of India has already crossed one billion mark with fewer resources have bought companies to invest in GM crops.

A large number of awareness campaigns should be conducted to reach the farmers to inform them about the benefits of using seeds that are resistant to pests, diseases, herbicides, and crops resistant to drought, cold, salinity and other harsh environments. This will bring confidence among farmers and policy makers.

Impact of Biotechnology in Animal production

Biotechnology promises to make significant changes in the field of plant and animal production and health. In both areas, it will affect all stages of the production chain, agrochemicals and food processing animal by-finals.

The use of biotechnology in animal production has grown faster than its applications in crop production. Worldwide, more than half of all biotechnology research and development costs are in the field of human health. In the experimental phase, a large number of drugs, diagnostic probes, vaccines, etc. are often applied in the production of livestock before becoming available for human use. The developments in the pharmaceutical sector, therefore, have significant implications for animal production for many innovations in this sector are also applicable to animals.

The applications of biotechnology to animal production to cover four areas:

• L ', the reproduction and breeding;

• Animal health;

• Food and Nutrition;

• The growth and production.

In the field of play, the new bio-technologies such as embryo transfer, in vitro fertilization, cloning and sex determination of embryos have been developed for different types of livestock such as cattle. There is substantial interest in breeding programs in developing countries because the importation of frozen embryos may be cheaper than the import of live animals.

Animal Health, the second field can be improved with new biotechnological methods of diagnosis, prevention and control of animal diseases. Diagnostic tests based on the use of antibodies and vaccines against viral and bacterial diseases are particularly relevant for developing countries and a wide application for the prevention of animal disease epidemics.

Biotechnology research in the third field of animal nutrition focuses on improving the enzyme treatment of food and reduce anti-nutritional factors in certain plants that are used as food. In developing countries, these techniques could eventually increase the potential scope of crops used to feed the largest herds of cattle.

Experiments with hormones to increase milk production and meat are the subject of much debate in industrialized countries because of possible adverse effects on animals and agricultural structures. In developing countries, however, increases in specific productivity may be a primary consideration which may lead to a rapid adoption of large-scale introduction in many industrialized countries. This field is another field of application of biotechnology.

Biotechnology in Health- How to ensure growth

The obvious benefits of biotechnology for human health and life style has catapulted businesses and governments to join and create a positive framework for the industry to promote for the good of all.

The following measures can be taken by the mandarins of the captains of industry and reap the rewards of the great potential of the sector.

In the long term, the government support creative
Governments can encourage the biotech sector, providing incentives to overcome the difficult economic conditions. For example, Brazilian authorities faced with high rates of inflation and the Cuban authorities revised foreign investment laws. In reality, political will and a strong government role is essential for all countries with strengths in biotechnology. It 'the same model as the U.S. government has adopted several years ago. global high-tech industry of America in the biotechnology sector has been strongly supported by the government in almost all stages of its evolution. The loss of the most brilliant researchers and developed countries like the United States is a serious and continuing challenge for developing countries and governments can play an important role in stemming the "brain drain". Since the end of 1990, China has made concerted efforts to encourage expatriate professionals to return and contribute to research efforts. Incentives include the provision of funding for the creation of laboratories in China and programs that enable scientists to develop the business back. Similar trends were also noted in India, where a large number of NRIs returning to the country for growth opportunities and incentives offered in the country.

product specialization results of profitability:
By focusing on a specialized field is what is needed for developing countries. For example, recombinant vaccines are relatively easy to reproduce and can be much more cost-effective in the treatment of infectious diseases drug. India, for example, is developing vaccines for hepatitis B and C. With limited resources and underdeveloped private sector, targeted at specific sectors to meet both their needs and existing strengths is an effective strategy employed by some developing countries.

Private sector power products and services:
Initiate and support the growth of the private sector and the commercialization of scientific discoveries into products is what is needed. Private sector participation is essential to integrate several sources of knowledge in the field of biotechnology for health and their transformation into products and services.

Successful innovation requires collaboration:
Successful innovation requires collaboration and cooperation widespread. lack of cooperation from China has prevented its scientists to be the first in the world to sequence severe acquired respiratory syndrome (SARS).

Emerging issues in Agri-Biotechnology in India

The growing population, limited land for cultivation and the growing demand for alternative energy sources has led to greater application of the techniques of biotechnology in agriculture in India. various research institutes and departments of the Government of India and the Governments of the States to focus efforts on other exploration and exploitation of new technologies to improve agricultural production and productivity.

With the approval of Bt cotton for commercial cultivation in April 2002, seed companies more and more people are looking for technologies such as genetic modification of insect protection. There is also an increasing use of molecular markers in plant breeding.

With the promulgation of the rights of breeders and farmers 'rights bill', there is an increasing demand for molecular fingerprinting of germplasm lines of claiming ownership of these crop varieties and hybrids. There is a growing awareness that some of these new technologies will lead to future growth of the crop productivity and quality. The ability to develop or source of these technologies will determine the future leaders of agriculture in this country.

The main concerns and questions

• Excessive delays in the regulatory system as it exists today.

• Lack of adequate intellectual property protection and uncertainties relating to the capture of value.

• the doubts and apprehensions among the farmers and policy makers on various applications of biotechnology in the field.

• Lack of political consensus on various issues.

Addressing these key issues

The industry should initiate a debate on these issues and bring to the attention of legislators and other stakeholders. It 'also need to educate our farmers and agronomists on the benefits as soon Successful exploitation of new technologies in agriculture.

Early trends

There is a large part of farmers, the consumers of this technology in this country who have seen the benefits and began to ask for agro-biotechnology, such as Bt cotton, however, the industry today is not able to meet this question, because there are very few players in this field. Sensing this opportunity, some unscrupulous elements were undertaking non-essential goods and forgery in the name of some of these new technologies. In the short term, this trend can affect public confidence in these new technologies, if appropriate measures are not taken against. However, in the long term, agro-biotechnology will have a positive impact on Indian agriculture more and more benefits are real.

GM Crops- Altered nutrition and composition- Fortification

Although GM crops have emerged for some time and have revolutionized the agricultural sector, while a number of countries, many efforts are made to contribute more in the realm of avant-garde. Some of these efforts are designed to increase productivity and resistance to insects, weeds and viruses that affect the yield and production accordingly. Other initiatives in the area are also strengthening the intrinsic nature of culture in itself have an impact, positive impact on human health and development.

Some developments in the field are as follows:

vitamin-enriched rice. The best known example of a transgenic plant nutritional properties of rice containing high levels of beta-carotene - a precursor of vitamin A. Vitamin A is essential to increase disease resistance, protection against visual impairment and blindness, and improve the opportunities for growth and development. Vitamin A deficiency contributes to serious illness and infant mortality. This condition prevented the increase in disease burden for health systems in developing countries. enhanced vitamin A rice and maize are currently being developed for growing in developing countries. The current efforts to ensure that vitamin A in rice can be effectively absorbed in the human gut. Once this is solved, 300 g of transgenic rice could make a significant contribution to the daily requirement of vitamin A and the man will have a significant impact on human development.

High-iron rice. The prevalence of iron deficiency is very high in regions where rice is the staple food daily. This is because rice has a low iron content. rice seed ferritin iron-transporter protein of soybeans were found to contain twice as much iron as the seed of the variety has not been processed. Rice was transformed with three genes that increase the accumulation of iron in rice grains and iron absorption from the gastrointestinal tract.

Improving the protein content. Researchers are also studying methods that could improve the protein content of vegetable base such as cassava, bananas and potatoes. The results of greenhouse experiments show that these tubers are 35-45% more protein, and the level of essential amino acids.

Elimination of allergens and anti-nutritional factors. Cassava roots contain naturally high levels of cyanide. Since they are a staple food in tropical Africa, which led to high levels of cyanide in the blood that have harmful effects. Application of modern biotechnology to reduce the concentration of this toxic substance in cassava should reduce the preparation time.

Modification of starch and fatty acid profile. In an effort to provide healthier food, there is an effort to increase the starch content of potatoes to absorb less fat during cooking to create healthy fats, the fatty acid composition of soybean and canola has been modified to produce oils with low levels of saturated fat. R & D is currently focused on soybean, rapeseed and palm oil. Two such transgenic crops have already been approved in the United States of America.

Future trends in GM crops

The introduction of GM crops in the lexicon of the word agriculture has contributed to spend hours of research and ways the most rapid increase in areas where technology can be used for commercial applications. Now, the introduction of foreign genes in plant species of economic importance, resulting in crop improvement and production of new products in the factories are no longer regarded with awe. Nor is the use of industrial chemicals and environmentally friendly alternative cost effective as biofuels, bio-fertilizers and organic pesticides that are also due to increased agricultural production, improve health and safety standards.

The introduction of commercial crops with agronomic traits is often referred to as the first generation of GM plants. The development of GM crops with agronomic traits and the continuous production of a range of GM crops with improved properties is also running under laboratory conditions. Several new characters are being tested in laboratory and field trials in a number of countries. Many of these GM crops "second generation are still under development and not likely to enter the market for several years. All of the GM crops on the market for commercial applications only after careful consideration and legal approvals.

The main areas of research and development (R & D) in the field of GM crops are as follows:

1. agronomic traits and resistance to virus

2. Altered nutrition and composition.

Improvement of agronomic traits

This evolution makes plants resistant to pests and diseases and helps the crop to grow without being affected by weeds and insects. In the short term, most recently commercialized GM crops continue to focus on agronomic traits, including herbicide resistance and insect resistance and, indirectly, the potential yield. R & D in this area focuses on:

1. Enter characters herbicide resistance in a wider range of varieties of corn, soybean and rapeseed.
2. Broadening the range of herbicides that can be used in combination with GM crops resistant to herbicides, such as the introduction of herbicide tolerance to bromoxynil, oxynil and sulfonylurea.
3. New genes for insect resistance in plants Stack, such as new variants containing other Bt toxins

Adding resistance to viruses. resistance to the virus could be extremely important for improving agricultural productivity. The following field trials of crops resistant to the virus are underway in different parts of the world: the sweet potato (feathery mottle virus), corn (maize streak virus) and African cassava (mosaic virus). These crops could be marketed within 3-5 years. Because of its complex genome, the work on virus-resistant wheat and barley yellow dwarf progress is still being studied in the laboratory.

Economic cost adopting GM crops

Many reports of organizations or in support or criticism of genetically modified foods have been published, and the number of applications has increased or decreased the profitability of agricultural practices, including GMOs can be found in world literature.

A review of the National Center for Food and Agricultural Policy concluded that biotechnology has and will continue to have a significant impact on improved efficiency, reduced costs and reduce pesticide use producer. GM Bt cotton appears to have significant benefits for small farmers in many parts of the world. On the other hand, some report lower yields, continued dependency on chemical sprays, the loss of exports and profits for farmers critical reduced following the use of biotechnology.

A U.S. Department of Agriculture report on the economic impact of GM crops summarized a positive impact of the adoption of Bt cotton on the farm system, but a negative impact in the case of an improvement in the performance of Bt corn also been observed with the herbicide tolerant maize, while significant was observed with soybeans resistant to herbicides.

A detailed study by the European Commission on the economic impact of GM crops on agriculture has concluded that the rapid adoption by farmers in the United States was the result of expectations of strong profitability. However, there is no conclusive evidence on profitability at farm level of GM crops.

The advantage of the land the most immediate and tangible benefits to farmers of GM crops seems to be a combination of performance and convenience of genetically modified crops - in particular the varieties resistant to herbicides. These crops allow for more flexibility in cropping practices and in some cases, due to reduced work or flexible. For insect-resistant crops like Bt corn, production losses are reduced compared to conventional maize. However, cost-effectiveness of Bt corn depends on a number of factors, in particular growing conditions.

The profitability of GM crops should be tested over a long period of time. First, there are significant fluctuations in annual yield and price and it is difficult to isolate the possible effects of biotechnology. Second, changes in supply and demand of the food chain must be considered together. A recent study analyzed the international spread of the result of the use of GMOs shows the need to differentiate between cultures and regions. In China, a region with a base generally high pesticide and pesticide poisoning among farmers, a report showed that use of Bt cotton significantly reduced pesticide use without reducing the output per hectare and the quality cotton. This led to significant health and economic benefits for small farmers.

There seems to be evidence of the profitability of GM crops in specific situations, especially growing conditions are strongly dependent on regional agro-ecological factors, particularly the reference pressure of pests and pesticides. On the other hand, it seems that there are situations where these factors do not allow the profitability of GM crops, or when other practices for the installation may be more value for various reasons or market Regional.

Assessment of the impact of GM foods on human health

Introduction of GM crops for human consumption has been fraught with controversy and conflict of interests of various parties such as governments, companies and research institutions and farmers and consumers. To balance the stakes of all stakeholders and to carry out an appropriate procedure for risk assessment, it is essential that the first and most important assessment of their impact on human health is given due consideration by policy makers around the world . It is not that the world governing bodies are not aware of the problem. In July 2003, the Codex Commission adopted the following principles, which although not binding on national governments, but are considered in the performance assessment:

• Principles for the risk analysis of foods derived from modern biotechnology;

• Guidelines for the conduct of food safety assessment of foods derived from recombinant-DNA plants;

• Guidelines for the conduct of food safety assessment of foods produced using recombinant DNA microorganisms.

These principles and guidelines presuppose make a preliminary assessment of the market, made on a case by case basis, including an assessment of both direct effects (from the inserted gene) and side effects (which may be incurred as a result of adding the new gene). These principles and guidelines in order to assess the quality and impact of GM foods require investigation of:

(A) direct health effects (toxicity);

(B) the tendency to cause allergic reactions (allergenicity);

(C) specific components thought to have nutritional or toxic properties;

(D) the stability of the inserted gene;

(E) nutritional effects associated with genetic modification, and

(F) any adverse effects that may result from the insertion of the gene.

Potential direct effects on human health

The potential direct health effects of GM foods are generally comparable to the known risks associated with conventional food, and include, for example, the potential to cause allergies and toxicity and its impact on the nutritional quality and microbiological safety of food. While many of these issues have not traditionally been evaluated for conventional food products, the safety assessment of GM food, followed by a gradual process aided by a structured series of questions. The factors taken into account in the safety assessment include:

• Identity of the gene of interest, including sequence analysis.
• Source of the gene of interest.
• Composition of GMOs.
• The protein product expression of the novel DNA.
• the potential toxicity.
• Potential cause allergy.

Its important to be taken into account by all the decision makers of these areas in order to instill a sense of trust between those who are skeptical about the use of genetically modified crops for human consumption. This will have a positive impact on growth and food security among nations.