One of the benchmark moments in the movement for GMO transparency came in 2012 when professor Gilles-Eric Séralini of France and his team published a study showing the toxic, carcinogenic effects of Monsanto’s Roundup and Roundup-Ready corn on lab rats.

The study was retracted, however, amid a firestorm of controversy and questionable ethics surrounding the Biotech industry and its role in getting the paper taken out of the peer-reviewed journal Food and Chemical Toxicology.

Eventually, Séralini and his study were able to resurface as it was later published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Sciences Europe, a development that was far less covered in the mainstream media than the retraction of the paper, and the controversy surrounding Monsanto’s role in that process as well.

Now, yet another peer-reviewed paper is once again backing the Séralini study and asking deeper questions about what has become of science in an era where commercial and corporate interests are taking an active role in deciding what results should be deemed acceptable.

The infamous lab rats with tumors photo produced by the original study.

The infamous lab rats with tumors photo produced by the original study.

Exposing Biotech Criticisms of the Séralini Study

As detailed in this new article from the website from reporter Claire Robinson, the new paper discusses the events that happened following the Séralini study’s publication.

As Robinson says:

The paper was attacked by pro-GMO scientists, who argued that it should be retracted. Eventually the journal editor capitulated and retracted the paper, though it was subsequently republished in Environmental Sciences Europe.

The authors of the new paper comment on this row, lamenting the growth of “a trend in which disputes, between interest groups vying for retraction and republication of papers that report controversial results, overshadow the normal scientific process in which peer-reviewed publication stimulates new research, generating new empirical evidence that drives the evolution of scientific understanding.”

The authors, John Fagan, Terje Traavik and Thomas Bøhn also back the findings of the Séralini study in an analysis that they say confirms the following:

 “…that NK603 maize and Roundup are kidney and liver toxicants at levels below current regulatory thresholds and that ‘consequently, the regulatory status of NK603, glyphosate and Roundup requires reevaluation.’”

In other words, they believe, unfortunately for the millions of people unknowingly consuming GMOs in the United States where labeling is not mandated, that serious health risks are likely, just as Séralini and his team discovered.

The paper also pokes at the “gaping holes” in the pro-GMO lobby’s critiques of the study, casting doubt on the entire process of the Séralini study’s retraction.

For more on the paper, check out the article titled “Science must be protected from commercial interests.” by clicking on this link. You can also read the full paper from Fagan and his colleagues by clicking on the link as well.

Nick Meyer writes for March Against Monsanto and the website


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