Home > ethics, genetics, transhumanism > GM Food, Human Enhancement, Materials Science, Solar Panels, and Human Genome Sequencing

GM Food, Human Enhancement, Materials Science, Solar Panels, and Human Genome Sequencing

Some thoughts on genetically modified foods in the future, courtesy of Sentient Developments.  In the present, however, there seem to be plenty of problems with GM foods as developed by Monsanto,potentially resulting in suicides in India and a recent link to mammalian organ failure.

Ronald Bailey makes the Case For Enhancing People, an excellent article that I might have to post some more commentary on once the holidays have passed and I have a day or two to really think about everything he’s saying.

MIT has a nice summary of materials science advances in the past year, including much more efficient color-emitting technology, vastly more efficient batteries, and invisibility cloaks.

Care2 has a short piece on cheap solar panels; not very powerful, but enough to make a significant difference in the poorest of countries.

Finally, doctors are going to begin routinely screening human genomes in some hospitals to help cross reference (presumably anonymous) patient data in an effort to find commonalities between people with diseases. The information mined from this ought to help create more effective drug treatments, or even allow for the beginnings of customized medicine.

Happy New Year to everyone!

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  1. Moonshine Productions
    January 5, 2012 at 6:05 am

    For the TRUTH about what Genetically Mutated food really does go to Rense dot com. But for now, here’s a quote: “”Rats fed genetically engineered Calgene Flavr-Savr tomatoes (developed to look fresh for weeks) for 28 days got bleeding stomachs (stomach lesions) and seven died and were replaced in the study.

    Rats fed Monsanto 863 Bt corn for 90 days developed multiple reactions typically found in response to allergies, infections, toxins, diseases like cancer, anemia and blood pressure problems. Their blood cells, livers and kidneys showed significant changes indicative of disease.

    Mice fed either GM potatoes engineered to produce Bt- toxin or natural potatoes containing the toxin had intestinal damage. Both varieties created abnormal and excessive cell growth in the lower intestine. The equivalent human damage might cause incontinence or flu-like symptoms and could be pre-cancerous. The study disproved the contention that digestion destroys Bt-toxin and is not biologically active in mammals.

    Workers in India handling Bt cotton while picking, loading, weighing and separating the fiber from seeds developed allergies. They began with “mild to severe itching,” then redness and swelling, followed by skin eruptions. These symptoms affected their skin, eyes (got red and swollen with excessive tearing) and upper respiratory tract causing nasal discharge and sneezing. In some cases, hospitalization was required. At one cotton gin factory, workers take antihistamines daily.”

    Sheep grazing on Bt cotton developed “unusual systems” before dying “mysteriously.” Reports from four Indian villages revealed 25% of them died within a week. Post mortems indicated a toxic reaction. The study raises questions about cottonseed oil safety and human health for people who eat meat from animals fed GM cotton. It’s crucial to understand that what animals eat, so do people.

    Nearly all 100 Filipinos living adjacent to a Bt corn field became ill. Their symptoms appeared when the crop was producing airborne pollen and was apparently inhaled. Doing it produced headaches, dizziness, extreme stomach pain, vomiting, chest pains, fever, and allergies plus respiratory, intestinal and skin reactions. Blood tests conducted on 39 victims showed an antibody response to Bt-toxin suggesting it was the cause. Four other villages experienced the same problems that also resulted in several animal deaths.

    Iowa farmers reported a conception rate drop of from 80% to 20% among sows (female pigs) fed GM corn. Most animals also had false pregnancies, some delivered bags of water and others stopped menstruating. Male pigs were also affected as well as cows and bulls. They became sterile and all were fed GM corn.”

  2. January 6, 2012 at 6:03 am

    Do you want to “Be GMO Free”? Take the GMO Survey at LivingOrganic.org to voice your opinion and learn more about genetically engineered food.

  3. January 7, 2012 at 11:25 am

    This is a topic close to my heart cheers, where are your contact details though?

  4. January 9, 2012 at 1:17 am

    Hey Boydfuturist,
    On a similar note,, Back a few decades ago, pet owners did not pay much attention to their dog’s dietary needs and fed them whatever kind of dog food was the most affordable. Human grade dog food was almost unheard of, unless it referred to feeding dogs what was left over as table scraps at mealtime. Nobody would consider eating the kinds of ingredients found in commercially made dog food. But today there are many sources of excellent dog food that are made with ingredients we all recognize as suitable for humans, such as red potatoes, carrots, and even apples.
    Thx.

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  6. January 16, 2012 at 11:42 am

    Thanks for the compliment, Kandace!

    Samella: You can email me at johntniman (at) gmail (dot) com if you like.

    Johnathon: Good points. Is it necessary for dog food to be human-grade, though? Wouldn’t dogs in the wild eat something substantially less purified than we’d expect from human food?

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  1. January 17, 2012 at 3:55 pm

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