A gene for all ills

28 May 1998

A gene for all ills

SCIENTISTS expect to begin experiments next year to genetically boost the vitamin C content of fruit and vegetables.

Clinical trials have shown that a genetically-engineered potato can provide resistance to “travellers diarrhoea”, reports The Independent.

The main focus of geneticists is on altering plants so that they will become useful “factories” for chemicals such as vaccines, or making them more fertile so the same land area can feed ever-expanding populations.

The theory is health workers would provide genetically-engineered crops, such as bananas, potatoes or other staples like maize and rice, containing vaccines.

Meanwhile, the BBC programme The Big Dinner found one in five food samples that claimed not to use genetically-modified soya actually did. The BBC sent a food parcel – picked at random – to Government food laboratories in Norwich.

  • The Independent 28/05/98 page 5

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