Corn rootworms wreaked havoc on U.S. crops for years, but genetically modified corn stopped them in their tracks. (It was engineered to be poisonous to pests). Now, it looks like the rootworms are back in business; some of the tough little guys have evolved and developed resistance to the corn, which secretes toxins derived from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), according to a study published yesterday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Scientists are saying the development could have been prevented if farmers had managed the crops better and planted refuges of non-Bt corn, Wired reports.
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