Anti-GMO Study Discredited

There's big news in the anti-GMO world.

Food and Chemical Toxicology, the peer-reviewed scientific journal that in 2012 published controversial research by Gilles-Eric Séralini concluding that RoundUp-resistant maize and RoundUp are toxic and cause cancer, has announced it is retracting that paper.

Séralini's research was got a lot of press, and has been widely cited by people who oppose genetically modified products. The now-discredited study even led to banning certain GMOs in Russia and Kenya, and it was used in the Proposition 37 debate in California (a referendum over labeling of GM food).

But the study's design and conclusions were controversial from the start.

From the Economist:

"Smelling a Rat"

Dec 1st 2013, 22:08

GENETICALLY modified maize causes cancer: that was the gist of a study, among the most controversial in recent memory, published in September 2012 in the journal, Food and Chemical Toxicology. Well, actually, it doesn't. The journal has just retracted the article. It would be too much to say that GM foods have therefore been proven safe. But no other study has so far found significant health risks in mammals as a result of eating GM foods...

More about this at Forbes:

"Séralini Threatens Lawsuit In Wake Of Retraction Of Infamous GMO Cancer Rat Study"

As the Genetic Literacy Project reports, the GMO wars are escalating after the discrediting of a central pillar of the anti-crop biotechnology movement and the stumbling by a prominent science journal.

Gilles-Éric Séralini, author of the controversial rat study that claimed to show that genetically modified corn could lead to a high incidence of cancer, says he is contemplating suing the journal that published the study if it goes through with its stated plan to retract it.

In a stunning development, the editor of the Food and Chemical Toxicology, A. Wallace Hayes, sent the French scientist a letter dated November 19 saying that the paper will be withdrawn if Séralini does not agree to do it voluntarily. In either case, evidence of the discredited paper will be expunged from the journal's database.

You can read more about the background on what's being called the Séralin affair on Wikipedia.