Aimed at those who don't know their genome from their
mosaic virus, the useful little guide, Genetic Engineering, by the
animal charity Viva!, takes readers by the hand and gives them a tour of
the new technology. It costs just £1.50 (including p&p) [approximately
$2.50 American money] and is available direct from Viva!, 12 Queen
Square, Brighton BN1 3FD. Call 01273 777688.
With Europe now giving the green light for the
widespread introduction of genetic modification, the timing is perfect.
Genetic Engineering confirms that the publics reaction against
Frankenstein foods wasn't irrational and sets out clear reasons why they
have every reason to be worried.
It explains how genes are engineered and what they're
used for -- including plants, animals, xenotransplantation and cloning.
It then simply and clearly runs through the failures that have already
occurred and possible future dangers for animal welfare, human health,
the environment and hopes of a sustainable future. It reveals that we
are eating genes that have never been part of the human diet -- genes
from alien bacteria, rats and scorpions. This reasoned argument against
gene tampering is introduced by Luke Anderson, author of the book
Genetic Engineering, Food and our Environment.
Perhaps just as worryingly, Genetic Engineering reveals
that decisions governing the introduction of this new technology have
more to do with political influence, commercial blackmail and friends in
high places than sound science. Professor of Genetics at Harvard
University, Richard Lewontin, sums up the fears: "We have such a
miserably poor understanding of how the organism develops from its DNA
(genetic blueprint) that I would be surprised if we don't get one rude
shock after another."
For further information or copies of the guide, contact:
Juliet Gellatley or Tony Wardle
Vegetarians International Voice for Animals
12 Queen Square, Brighton BN1 3FD, UK
Tel: 01273 777688 Fax: 01273 776755
Registered Charity No. 1037486
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