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In a study that prompted criticism from other experts, French scientists said on Wednesday that rats fed on Monsanto's genetically modified (GM) corn or exposed to its top-selling weedkiller suffered tumors and multiple organ damage.
Gilles-Eric Seralini of the University of Caen and colleagues said ra]ts fed on a diet containing NK603 - a seed variety made tolerant to dousings of Monsanto's Roundup weedkiller - or given water with Roundup at levels permitted in the United States, died earlier than those on a standard diet.
Experts not involved in the study were highly skeptical about
Food and Chemical Toxicology
Available online 19 September 2012
In Press, Corrected Proof
Received 11 April 2012
Accepted 2 August 2012
Available online 19 September 2012
Long term toxicity of a Roundup herbicide and a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize
Gilles-Eric Séralini a,
Emilie Clair a,
Robin Mesnage a,
Steeve Gress a,
Nicolas Defarge a,
Manuela Malatesta b,
Didier Hennequin c,
Joël Spiroux de Vendômois a
a University of Caen, Institute of Biology, CRIIGEN and Risk Pole, MRSH-CNRS, EA 2608, Esplanade de la Paix, Caen Cedex 14032, France
b University of Verona, Department of Neurological, Neuropsychological, Morphological and Motor Sciences, Verona 37134, Italy
c University of Caen, UR ABTE, EA 4651, Bd Maréchal Juin, Caen Cedex 14032, France
The health effects of a Roundup-tolerant genetically modified maize (from 11% in the diet), cultivated with or without Roundup, and Roundup alone (from 0.1 ppb in water), were studied 2 years in rats. In females, all treated groups died 2–3 times more than controls, and more rapidly. This difference was visible in 3 male groups fed GMOs. All results were hormone and sex dependent, and the pathological profiles were comparable. Females developed large mammary tumors almost always more often than and before controls, the pituitary was the second most disabled organ; the sex hormonal balance was modified by GMO and Roundup treatments. In treated males, liver congestions and necrosis were 2.5–5.5 times higher. This pathology was confirmed by optic and transmission electron microscopy. Marked and severe kidney nephropathies were also generally 1.3–2.3 greater. Males presented 4 times more large palpable tumors than controls which occurred up to 600 days earlier. Biochemistry data confirmed very significant kidney chronic deficiencies; for all treatments and both sexes, 76% of the altered parameters were kidney related. These results can be explained by the non linear endocrine-disrupting effects of Roundup, but also by the overexpression of the transgene in the GMO and its metabolic consequences.
► A Roundup-tolerant maize and Roundup provoked chronic hormone and sex dependent pathologies. ► Female mortality was 2–3 times increased mostly due to large mammary tumors and disabled pituitary. ► Males had liver congestions, necrosis, severe kidney nephropathies and large palpable tumors. ► This may be due to an endocrine disruption linked to Roundup and a new metabolism due to the transgene. ► GMOs and formulated pesticides must be evaluated by long term studies to measure toxic effects..
GM, genetically modified;
MRL, maximal residual levels;
GMO, genetically modified organism;
OECD, Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development;
PCA, principal component analysis;
PLS, partial least-squares;
OPLS, orthogonal partial least-squares;
NIPALS, Nonlinear Iterative Partial Least Squares;
OPLS-DA, Orthogonal Partial Least Squares Discriminant Analysis;
L, lipid droplet;
R, rough endoplasmic reticulum (on microscopy pictures only);
UEx, excreted in urine during 24 h;
APPT, Activated Partial Thromboplastin Time;
MCV, Mean Corpuscular Volume;
PT, Prothrombine Time;
RBC, Red Blood Cells;
ALT, alanine aminotransferase;
MCHC, Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration;
A/G, Albumin/Globulin ratio;
WBC, White Blood Cells;
AST, aspartate aminotransferase
Endocrine disrupting effects