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The Science Behind Gmos

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Chapter Summary

Understanding global legislative efforts at regulating genetically modified organism (GMOs) requires a basic examination of the science behind biotechnology and its development into innovative techniques that are currently transforming agriculture, environmental applications, public health, food safety, and international trade. The primary objective of these techniques is to apply knowledge of biological functions in order to provide benefits to human health and the environment, which includes a "continuum of technologies ranging from long-established and widely used classical technologies through more advanced, modern technologies". Arguments in favor of GMOs fall into three general categories, focusing primarily on economic, scientific, environmental, and social advantages presented by these products; the emphasis centers on economic, scientific, and environmental benefits of GMOs. Issues related to general viability of GMOs fall into two categories: the transfer of genetic material to other organisms; and the expression and expected effects of the transferred genetic material.

Keywords: biotechnology; environmental impacts; food safety; genetically modified organism (GMOs)



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