There are a lot of things we can do technologically, but that doesn’t mean we should. Science is making it possible for us to manipulate the DNA of living things – plants and animals. So what’s next? If it meant we could grow taller, would we willingly mix the DNA of a giraffe with our own? All these DNA concoctions summon memories of that creepy movie The Fly when Jeff Goldblum unknowingly gets into his newly invented telepod contraption with a fly – thereby mixing the two DNAs. The thing about altering DNA is, once it’s altered there is no going back. Jeff Goldblum was never going to be just plain human again.
Genetically engineered salmon, or transgenic salmon could show up your dinner plate very soon, as the FDA recently deemed it not a threat to the environment or to us. The above photo shows the desired trait of the altered DNA. Size. That’s it. Bigger fish. More money. Below is a brief description of what transgenic salmon is, as reported in the Huffinton Post.
The AquaAdvantage salmon has an added growth hormone from the Pacific Chinook salmon that allows the fish to produce growth hormone all year long. The engineers were able to keep the hormone active by using another gene from an eel-like fish called an ocean pout that acts like an “on” switch for the hormone. Typical Atlantic salmon produce the growth hormone for only part of the year.
The Center for Food Safety (www.centerforfoodsafety.org) sharply criticized today’s U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) announcement releasing an Environmental Assessment (EA) on the controversial AquaBounty AquaAdvantage® transgenic salmon. The FDA action is widely viewed as confirmation that the Obama Administration is prepared to approve shortly the first genetically engineered (GE) animal intended for human consumption in the face of widespread opposition.
“It is extremely disappointing that the Obama Administration continues to push approval of this dangerous and unnecessary product,” said Andrew Kimbrell, executive director for Center for Food Safety. “The GE salmon has no socially redeeming value; it’s bad for the consumer, bad for the salmon industry and bad for the environment. FDA’s decision is premature and misguided.” Read full article here.