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5 December 2013 11:26 am ,
Vol. 342 ,
Researchers have been hot on the trail of the elusive Denisovans, a type of ancient human known only by their DNA and...
Thousands of scientists in the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) are about to lose their jobs as a result of the...
Dyslexia, a learning disability that hinders reading, hasn't been associated with deficits in vision, hearing, or...
Exotic, elusive, and dangerous, snakes have fascinated humankind for millennia. They can be hard to find, yet their...
Researchers have sequenced and analyzed the first two snake genomes, which represent two evolutionary extremes. The...
Snake venoms are remarkably complex mixtures that can stun or kill prey within minutes. But more and more researchers...
At age 30, Dutch biologist Freek Vonk has built up a respectable career as a snake scientist. But in his home country,...
Since arriving on the island of Guam in the 1940s, the brown tree snake ( Boiga irregularis ) has extirpated native...
- 5 December 2013 11:26 am , Vol. 342 , #6163
- About Us
Live Chat: The Genes We Eat
14 November 2012 9:17 am
See below for the chat box. Join us each Thursday at 3 p.m. EDT for a live conversation with leading scientists and expert reporters.
As you pack in another mouthful of mashed potatoes next Thursday on Thanksgiving, consider the thousands of years of domestication that turned the wild potato and other staple crops such as corn into a tasty traditional meal. Thanks to the genetic revolution, we now know more than ever before about the evolution of our favorite foods, and we have the power to shape their future by introducing genes that increase resistance against disease, drought, and pests.
However, many worry that these advances could also result in risks to our health and the environment—concerns that surfaced again in the fight over Proposition 37, the defeated California initiative that would have required all genetically modified foods to be labeled, and in a controversial French study suggesting that GM corn causes tumors in rats. How should scientists address these fears? What will the explosion in genome sequencing reveal about the history of our favorite crops? How will the foods of the future differ from those of the past? And how will the controversy about GM foods play out over the next decade?
Join us for a live chat at 3 p.m. EST on Thursday, 15 November, on this page to discuss genetically modified foods. You can leave your questions in the comment box below before the chat starts. The full text of the chat will be archived on this page.
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Dr. Hans-Jörg Jacobsen heads the Institute for Plant Genetics of Leibniz University Hannover. He specializes in gene transfer, selection and molecular analysis of transgenic plants, transgenic pathogen resistance, micropropagation and tissue culture techniques.
Dr. Jordi Garcia-Mas is researcher at IRTA and Head of the Plant Genetics Department at the Center for Research and Agricultural Genomics in Barcelona, Spain. A plant genomics expert, his research focuses on the melon genome and the generation of genomic tools that can be used for breeding disease resistance and fruit quality in this species.
Dr. William Hallman, directs the Food Policy Institute at Rutgers University. An expert in risk perception and risk communication, his research explores food safety, food security, and public perceptions of controversial issues concerning food, health, and the environment.