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      Genetically modified crops and aquatic ecosystems: considerations for environmental risk assessment and non-target organism testing

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          Abstract

          Environmental risk assessments (ERA) support regulatory decisions for the commercial cultivation of genetically modified (GM) crops. The ERA for terrestrial agroecosystems is well-developed, whereas guidance for ERA of GM crops in aquatic ecosystems is not as well-defined. The purpose of this document is to demonstrate how comprehensive problem formulation can be used to develop a conceptual model and to identify potential exposure pathways, using Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) maize as a case study. Within problem formulation, the insecticidal trait, the crop, the receiving environment, and protection goals were characterized, and a conceptual model was developed to identify routes through which aquatic organisms may be exposed to insecticidal proteins in maize tissue. Following a tiered approach for exposure assessment, worst-case exposures were estimated using standardized models, and factors mitigating exposure were described. Based on exposure estimates, shredders were identified as the functional group most likely to be exposed to insecticidal proteins. However, even using worst-case assumptions, the exposure of shredders to Bt maize was low and studies supporting the current risk assessments were deemed adequate. Determining if early tier toxicity studies are necessary to inform the risk assessment for a specific GM crop should be done on a case by case basis, and should be guided by thorough problem formulation and exposure assessment. The processes used to develop the Bt maize case study are intended to serve as a model for performing risk assessments on future traits and crops.

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          Most cited references83

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          Control of coleopteran insect pests through RNA interference.

          Commercial biotechnology solutions for controlling lepidopteran and coleopteran insect pests on crops depend on the expression of Bacillus thuringiensis insecticidal proteins, most of which permeabilize the membranes of gut epithelial cells of susceptible insects. However, insect control strategies involving a different mode of action would be valuable for managing the emergence of insect resistance. Toward this end, we demonstrate that ingestion of double-stranded (ds)RNAs supplied in an artificial diet triggers RNA interference in several coleopteran species, most notably the western corn rootworm (WCR) Diabrotica virgifera virgifera LeConte. This may result in larval stunting and mortality. Transgenic corn plants engineered to express WCR dsRNAs show a significant reduction in WCR feeding damage in a growth chamber assay, suggesting that the RNAi pathway can be exploited to control insect pests via in planta expression of a dsRNA.
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            An Ecosystem Perspective of Riparian Zones

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              Multiple Trophic Levels of a Forest Stream Linked to Terrestrial Litter Inputs

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                +1-515-5354914 , +1-515-5357278 , keri.carstens@pioneer.com
                jennifer.anderson@pioneer.com
                pamela.m.bachman@monsanto.com
                Adinda.DeSchrijver@wiv-isp.be
                galen@umd.edu
                brian.federici@ucr.edu
                mick.hamer@syngenta.com
                Marco.Gielkens@rivm.nl
                peter.d.jensen@monsanto.com
                lamp@umd.edu
                rauschen@bio3.rwth-aachen.de
                geoff.ridley@ermanz.govt.nz
                joerg.romeis@art.admin.ch
                waggoner.annabel@epa.gov
                Journal
                Transgenic Res
                Transgenic Res
                Transgenic Research
                Springer Netherlands (Dordrecht )
                0962-8819
                1573-9368
                26 November 2011
                26 November 2011
                August 2012
                : 21
                : 4
                : 813-842
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Regulatory Science, Pioneer Hi-Bred, DuPont Agricultural Biotechnology, 2450 SE Oak Tree Ct., Ankeny, IA 50021 USA
                [2 ]Monsanto Company, 800 North Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63167 USA
                [3 ]Scientific Institute of Public Health, Juliette Wytsmanstraat 14, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
                [4 ]Department of Entomology, University of Maryland, 4112A Plant Sciences Building, College Park, MD 20742-4454 USA
                [5 ]Department of Entomology, University of California-Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521 USA
                [6 ]Syngenta, Jealott’s Hill International Research Centre, Bracknell, UK
                [7 ]National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, Expertise Centre for Substances, PO Box 1, 3720 BA Bilthoven, The Netherlands
                [8 ]Institute for Biology III (Plant Physiology), RWTH Aachen University, Worringerweg 1, 52074 Aachen, Germany
                [9 ]Environmental Risk Management Authority, PO Box 131, Wellington, 6140 New Zealand
                [10 ]Agroscope Reckenholz-Tänikon Research Station ART, Reckenholzstr. 191, 8046 Zurich, Switzerland
                [11 ]US Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Pesticide Programs, Biopesticides and Pollution Prevention Division, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Mail Code: 7511P, Washington, DC 20460-0001 USA
                Article
                9569
                10.1007/s11248-011-9569-8
                3394238
                22120952
                a04c7793-daee-400e-8e39-6bb436806aec
                © The Author(s) 2011
                History
                : 19 April 2011
                : 7 October 2011
                Categories
                Original Paper
                Custom metadata
                © Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

                Genetics
                non-target organism,environmental risk assessment,aquatic ecosystem,genetically modified crops

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