domingo, marzo 20, 2005

Tears and Biopharm Rice

by Arty Mangan, Bioneers Food and Farming Director

I don't cry much. I'll hide behind a cliche and say, "It's a guy thing". The human body is truly amazing. Did you know that a teardrop contains proteins that are natural antibiotics and protect against eye infection? You may not know that, but the biotech company Ventria Bioscience does, and they want to own it. Yes, they want to own the genetics of the protein contained in tears. It makes me want to cry.

Biotech companies are in the business of owning life forms by manipulating genes using a virus as a vector, slapping a patent on it, making it theirs and theirs alone. Maybe this is what is meant by "the ownership society".

Plants as drug factories and pig vaccine in corn Ventria Bioscience has been doing research field trials of their pharmaceutical rice in California since 1997. The rice contains synthetic versions of the human proteins found in tears and breast milk. Ventria hopes to market the drug as anti-diarrhea, antibiotic and anti-fungal. Federal regulations allow location of test fields to be confidential. That information can even be withheld from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) by simply writing CBI (confidential business information) on the application. The only real requirement is a 100 ft. buffer between GE research and commercial crops. Things like pig vaccines and human contraceptives have been part of the over one-hundred GE pharmaceutical field trials approved for research in the U.S.; nine of which have been conducted in California. Biotech companies like the idea of turning farm crops into drug factories for the simple reason it is a cheap production system.

0 Comentarios:

Publicar un comentario

Suscribirse a Comentarios de la entrada [Atom]

<< Página Principal