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Rostock, Germany

Nausch H.,University of Rostock | Sautter C.,ETH Zurich | Broer I.,University of Rostock | Schmidt K.,BioMath GmbH
Current Opinion in Biotechnology | Year: 2015

Field trails are indispensable for the scientific analysis of risks and potential benefits of genetically modified plants (GMP). The dramatic reduction of field trials in the European Union (EU) coincides with increasing safety demands, decreases in funding, and changes in the European directives. In parallel, opposition from non-governmental organizations (NGOs) has grown, and public acceptance has decreased. The cultivation of events approved by the EU is still allowed in principle, nevertheless, at least in Germany, there is a de facto moratorium on cultivation. In Switzerland, where development was much more hesitant compared to Germany, field trials are now possible, and a protected site has been established by the government. Public acceptance for scientific trials in Switzerland has risen, despite the continued moratorium on the cultivation based on a referendum. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Source


Zeljenkova D.,Slovak Medical University | Alacova R.,Slovak Medical University | Ondrejkova J.,Slovak Medical University | Ambrusova K.,Slovak Medical University | And 34 more authors.
Archives of Toxicology | Year: 2016

The GRACE (GMO Risk Assessment and Communication of Evidence; www.grace-fp7.eu) project was funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme. A key objective of GRACE was to conduct 90-day animal feeding trials, animal studies with an extended time frame as well as analytical, in vitro and in silico studies on genetically modified (GM) maize in order to comparatively evaluate their use in GM plant risk assessment. In the present study, the results of a 1-year feeding trial with a GM maize MON810 variety, its near-isogenic non-GM comparator and an additional conventional maize variety are presented. The feeding trials were performed by taking into account the guidance for such studies published by the EFSA Scientific Committee in 2011 and the OECD Test Guideline 452. The results obtained show that the MON810 maize at a level of up to 33 % in the diet did not induce adverse effects in male and female Wistar Han RCC rats after a chronic exposure. © 2016 The Author(s) Source


Zeljenkova D.,Slovak Medical University | Ambrusova K.,Slovak Medical University | Bartusova M.,Slovak Medical University | Kebis A.,Slovak Medical University | And 30 more authors.
Archives of Toxicology | Year: 2014

The GMO Risk Assessment and Communication of Evidence (GRACE; www.grace-fp7.eu) project is funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme. A key objective of GRACE is to conduct 90-day animal feeding trials, animal studies with an extended time frame as well as analytical, in vitro and in silico studies on genetically modified (GM) maize in order to comparatively evaluate their use in GM plant risk assessment. In the present study, the results of two 90-day feeding trials with two different GM maize MON810 varieties, their near-isogenic non-GM varieties and four additional conventional maize varieties are presented. The feeding trials were performed by taking into account the guidance for such studies published by the EFSA Scientific Committee in 2011 and the OECD Test Guideline 408. The results obtained show that the MON810 maize at a level of up to 33 % in the diet did not induce adverse effects in male and female Wistar Han RCC rats after subchronic exposure, independently of the two different genetic backgrounds of the event. © 2014, The Author(s). Source


Schmidt K.,BioMath GmbH | Schmidtke J.,BioMath GmbH | Kohl C.,Julius Kuhn Institute | Wilhelm R.,Julius Kuhn Institute | And 3 more authors.
Archives of Toxicology | Year: 2016

In this paper, we compare the traditional ANOVA approach to analysing data from 90-day toxicity studies with a more modern LMM approach, and we investigate the use of standardized effect sizes. The LMM approach is used to analyse weight or feed consumption data. When compared to the week-by-week ANOVA with multiple test results per week, this approach results in only one statement on differences in weight development between groups. Standardized effect sizes are calculated for the endpoints: weight, relative organ weights, haematology and clinical biochemistry. The endpoints are standardized, allowing different endpoints of the same study to be compared and providing an overall picture of group differences at a glance. Furthermore, in terms of standardized effect sizes, statistical significance and biological relevance are displayed simultaneously in a graph. © 2015, The Author(s). Source


Mikschofsky H.,University of Rostock | Heilmann E.,University of Rostock | Schmidtke J.,BioMath GmbH | Schmidt K.,BioMath GmbH | And 3 more authors.
Plant Molecular Biology | Year: 2011

The production of plant-derived pharmaceuticals essentially requires stable concentrations of plant constituents, especially recombinant proteins; nonetheless, soil and seasonal variations might drastically interfere with this stability. In addition, variability might depend on the plant organ used for production. Therefore, we investigated the variability in plant constituents and antigen expression in potato plants under greenhouse and field growth conditions and in leaves compared to tubers. Using potatoes expressing VP60, the only structural capsid protein of the rabbit haemorrhagic disease virus (RHDV), CTB, the non-toxic B subunit (CTB) of the cholera toxin (CTA-CTB5) and the marker protein NPTII (neomycinphosphotransferase) as a model, we compare greenhouse and field production of potato-derived antigens. The influence of the production organ turned out to be transgene specific. In general, yield, plant quality and transgene expression levels in the field were higher than or similar to those observed in the greenhouse. The variation (CV) of major plant constituents and the amount of transgene-encoded protein was not influenced by the higher variation of soil properties observed in the field. Amazingly, for specific events, the variability in the model protein concentrations was often lower under field than under greenhouse conditions. The changes in gene expression under environmental stress conditions in the field observed in another event do not reduce the positive influence on variability since events like these should excluded from production. Hence, it can be concluded that for specific applications, field production of transgenic plants producing pharmaceuticals is superior to greenhouse production, even concerning the stability of transgene expression over different years. On the basis of our results, we expect equal or even higher expression levels with lower variability of recombinant pharmaceuticals in the field compared to greenhouse production combined with approximately 10 times higher tuber yield in the field. © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V. Source

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