Will genetically modified soybeans solve the problem of overpopulation?

Russian biologist Aleksey Vladimirovich Surov and his colleagues set out to discover whether genetically modified soybeans, which are grown in 91% of soybean fields in the United States, really lead to problems in development and reproduction. What he found could cost the industry billions in damages.

Feeding three generations of hamsters for two years with GM soy has shown devastating effects. By the third generation, most hamsters have lost the ability to have children. They also showed slower growth and a high mortality rate among pups.

And if it’s not shocking enough, some third-generation hamsters have suffered from hair that has grown inside their mouths – a rare occurrence but common among GM soy-eating hamsters.

Surov used hamsters with fast reproduction rates. They were divided into 4 groups. The first group was fed a regular meal but no soy, the second group was fed unmodified soy, the third group was fed a regular meal with added GM soy, and the fourth group consumed more GM soy. Each group had five pairs of hamsters, each of which produced 7-8 litters, a total of 140 animals were used in the study.

Surov said that “initially everything went smoothly. However, we noticed quite a significant effect of GM soy when we formed new pairs of cubs and continued to feed them as before. The growth rates of these couples were slowed down, they later reached puberty.

He selected new pairs from each group, which produced 39 more litters. 52 cubs were born in the hamsters of the first, control, group and 78 in the group fed soybeans without GM. In the soybean group with GM, only 40 cubs were born. And 25% of them died. Thus, the mortality was five times higher than the mortality in the control group, where it was 5%. Of the hamsters that were fed high levels of GM soy, only one female gave birth. She had 16 cubs, about 20% of them died. Surov said that in the third generation, many animals were sterile.

Hair growing in the mouth

Tufts of colorless or colored hair in GM-fed hamsters reached the chewing surface of the teeth, and sometimes the teeth were surrounded by tufts of hairs on both sides. The hair grew vertically and had sharp ends.

Upon completion of the study, the authors concluded that this striking anomaly was related to the diet of the hamsters. They write: “This pathology can be exacerbated by nutrients that are not present in natural food, such as genetically modified components or contaminants (pesticides, mycotoxins, heavy metals, etc.)”.  

GM soy always poses a double threat due to its high herbicide content. In 2005, Irina Ermakova, a member of the Russian National Academy of Sciences, reported that more than half of baby rats fed GM soy died within three weeks. This is also five times more than the 10% death rate in the control group. The rat pups were also smaller and incapable of reproduction.

After completing Ermakova’s study, her lab began feeding all the rats GM soy. Within two months, the infant mortality of the population reached 55%.

When Ermakov was fed soy to male GM rats, their testicle color changed from normal pink to dark blue!

The Italian scientists also found changes in the testicles of mice, including damage to young sperm cells. In addition, the DNA of GMO-fed mouse embryos functions differently.

An Austrian government study published in November 2008 showed that the more GM corn fed to mice, the fewer babies they had, the smaller they were born.

Farmer Jerry Rosman has also noticed that his pigs and cows are becoming sterile. Some of his pigs even had false pregnancies and gave birth to bags of water. After months of research and testing, he finally traced the problem to GM corn feed.

Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine happened to notice that rats did not exhibit reproductive behavior. Research on corn feeds found two compounds that stopped the sexual cycle in females. One compound also neutralized male sexual behavior. All of these substances contributed to breast and prostate cancer. The researchers found that the content of these compounds in corn varies by variety.

From Haryana, India, a team of investigative veterinarians reports that buffaloes that consume GM cotton suffer from infertility, frequent miscarriages, premature births, and uterine prolapse. Many adult and young buffalo also died under mysterious circumstances.

Information attacks and denial of facts

Scientists who discover the adverse effects of consuming GMOs are regularly attacked, ridiculed, deprived of funding, and even fired. Ermakova reported high infant mortality among rodent offspring fed GM soybeans and turned to the scientific community to replicate and verify the preliminary results. It also required additional funds for the analysis of preserved organs. Instead, she was attacked and vilified. Samples were stolen from her lab, documents were burned on her desk, and she said her boss, under pressure from her boss, ordered her to stop doing GMO research. No one has yet repeated Ermakova’s simple and inexpensive research.

In an attempt to offer her sympathy, one of her colleagues suggested that maybe GM soy would solve the overpopulation problem!

Rejection of GMOs

Without detailed tests, no one can pinpoint exactly what causes reproductive problems in Russian hamsters and rats, Italian and Austrian mice and cattle in India and America. And we can only speculate about the link between the introduction of GM foods in 1996 and the corresponding rise in low birth weight, infertility and other problems in the US population. But many scientists, doctors, and concerned citizens do not believe that the public should remain lab animals for a massive, uncontrolled experiment in the biotech industry.

Aleksey Surov says: “We have no right to use GMOs until we understand the possible negative consequences not only for ourselves, but for future generations as well. We certainly need a thorough study to clarify this. Any type of contamination must be tested before we consume it, and GMOs are just one of them.”  


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