A KIND of genetically-modified maize has been linked to tumours in rats.
A team of French researchers found that rats fed on GMO maize NK 603 (of which Monsanto owns the patent) were two or three times more likely to develop tumours than ones fed ordinary maize.
At the end of their lives, aged two, 50-80% of female rats had tumours, compared to 30% of ones eating non-GM food.
Tumours also tended to develop earlier in their lives than in the other animals, especially in males.
The scientist leading the study, Prof Gilles-Eric Séralini of the Université de Caen, said: “After less than a year of different GMO maize menus there was carnage among our rats to a degree I had not imagined.”
From just the fourth month tumours were found in two male rats that soon grew to measure a quarter of their body weight, he said.
The results give reason to think there may be risks for humans, Prof Séralini believes.
He has an anti-GMO book coming out next week called Tous Cobayes! (We’re all guinea pigs), and a documentary has been made based on it.
The results are published in an American journal, Food and Chemical Toxicology.
Le Nouvel Observateur, which was the first to publicise the results in France, under the headline “Yes, GMOs are poisons!”, predicted the findings would be a “bomb” for the GM foods industry.
Photo: Pratheeps/ Wikimedia Commons