French Study Suggests Monsanto’s GMO Corn Has Toxic Effects on Rat Organs

A French research team has published a statistical research study in the International Journal of Biological Science that suggests that three of Monsanto’s genetically modified corn products (NK 603, MON 810, MON 863) may have a toxic effect on rat kidneys and other organs after only a three month exposure. The research report is based on Monsanto data and put together by a team including a pathologist, two statisticians and led by a molecular biologist at the University of Caen who happens to be a long-time French and European Union expert on GMO crops. The report’s citation is:

de Vendômois JS, Roullier F, Cellier D, Séralini GE. A Comparison of the Effects of Three GM Corn Varieties on Mammalian Health. Int J Biol Sci 2009; 5:706-726. Available from

Rather than try to summarize the report, here is what the report itself concludes:

However, in the three GM maize varieties that formed the basis of this investigation, new side effects linked to the consumption of these cereals were revealed, which were sex- and often dose-dependent. Effects were mostly concentrated in kidney and liver function, the two major diet detoxification organs, but in detail differed with each GM type. In addition, some effects on heart, adrenal, spleen and blood cells were also frequently noted. As there normally exists sex differences in liver and kidney metabolism, the highly statistically significant disturbances in the function of these organs, seen between male and female rats, cannot be dismissed as biologically insignificant as has been proposed by others [4]. We therefore conclude that our data strongly suggests that these GM maize varieties induce a state of hepatorenal toxicity. This can be due to the new pesticides (herbicide or insecticide) present specifically in each type of GM maize, although unintended metabolic effects due to the mutagenic properties of the GM transformation process cannot be excluded

It is unknown how the FDA and USDA will react to this research report. The needed research followup could take several years. I have not seen a resposne by Monsanto, though I have no doubt that one will be forthcoming. It is important to note that the data were developed by Monsanto or its contractors and obtained by European governments and Greenpeace attorneys through extensive litigation, which Monsanto lost. The data will likely be used in the EU to further regulate GMO foods.

James L. Pray

About James Pray

Attorney with BrownWinick Law Firm in Des Moines, Iowa.
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