Cover image for Genetically modified crops
Genetically modified crops
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River Edge, NJ : World Scientific, 2003


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30000010038809 TP248.65.F66 H34 2003 Open Access Book

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Plant molecular biology came to the fore in the early 1980s and there has been tremendous growth in the subject since then. The study of plant genes and genomes and the development of techniques for the incorporation of novel or modified genes into plants eventually led to the commercialization of genetically modified (GM) crops in the mid-1990s. This was seen as the start of a biotechnological revolution in plant breeding. However, plant biotechnology has become one of the hottest debates of the age and, in Europe at least, one of the greatest challenges that plant scientists have ever faced.This book describes the history and development of the science and techniques that underpin plant biotechnology, GM crops that are grown commercially around the world and the new varieties that are being developed. It covers failures as well as successes. The safety record of GM crops is reviewed together with the legislation that has been adopted to cover their use. The book also deals with the concerns of consumers, the GM crop debate and the prospects for the technology.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Researcher Halford does an outstanding job of explaining, in a simple style, the theory behind and practice of the science underlying the generation of genetically modified (GM) plants. The most valuable contribution of this book is that it explains the rigorous science behind this field in lay terms and deals with almost every controversy that has erupted during the development of this technology. Halford points to the mistakes of regulatory agencies, companies, scientists, and farmers that have delayed the acceptance of this technology while advocating that broad acceptance of GM crops that will benefit not only developing countries but also underdeveloped nations. Even though the book is written by a scientist practicing GM technology and appears to be defensive of GM technology in general, the author, who has witnessed the GM debate for several years, has attempted to present a comprehensive overview of the field without omitting missteps in the development of this technology and major concerns raised by several groups opposed to it. This book is definitely a must-read for those who want to hear the scientists' side of the story. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. General readers; upper-division undergraduates through professionals. J. M. Tomich Kansas State University