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back to article Genetically modified mutants 'safe for release' into the wild

Remorseless German boffins say that the time may now be ripe for scientists to begin release of "transgenic individuals into populations". Concerns that this might result in those populations being completely replaced by the superior lab-developed individuals can be addressed, they say, by the use of cunningly selected mutants. …

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Mosquitos?

How about ur-gerbils next?

http://www.webcomicsnation.com/shaenongarrity/narbonic/series.php?view=archive&chapter=9938

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Hang on

Didn't they say similar things about rabbits, cane toads and many other wonderfully successful introductions of alien species?

Personally I don't give a damn whether they release them or not, but scientists have cried wolf a few times too often about such things.

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Joke

Re: rabbits, cane toads etc.

Yup, those were also released as a test on a remote island of little importance. The results obtained are why it hasn't been done everywhere else.

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Ru
Meh

Most problematic alien species were not introduced by scientists, and no scientist was involved in the planning of such events.

This project isn't about introducing an alien species, its about altering an existing one in a beneficial fashion.

Lastly, no-one cried wolf when it came to introducing species... you're talking about the complete opposite sitation whereby a terrible thing was declared safe, rather than the opposite. Fable fail.

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Whatever ...

I have 7 tomato mutations that happened in my personal veggie garden. The oldest is about 16 years old. All are tasty.

Try to remember, kiddies, there is no such thing as "wild corn" .... Every single grain that you (attempt) to cook with is technically "genetically modified".

Think about it.

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Boffin

Selective breeding...

... != Genetic Modification.

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Ru

Transgenics is not the same as selective breeding

It is extremely disingenous to equate the two.

That said, I'm wholly in favour of anything that can eliminate malaria without necessarily eradicating the mosquito population... I expect they form a valuable part of the diet of many other species, and their loss would have knock-on effects.

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Eh?

What colo(u)r is the sky on your planet, Graham?

Oh. I see. If "it was god what done it" it's OK, but if us humans did it it's not?

Do grow up and drink your genetically modified beer.

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"Selective breeding != Genetic Modification"

Sure it does. What on earth do you think controls the trait that you want in your crop? That's right, genetics. So, by selectively breeding for juicier tomatoes you're mutating the genome.

There's no such thing as 'natural' beef, corn, etc!

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FAIL

@jake

Please can you try to comprehend the difference between the selective breeding of plants and animals to reinforce (or remove) traits that are already present in that species and using recombinant DNA techniques to splice in gene sequences from entirely unrelated species.

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@Graham Marsden

I have Merlot grapes here that have Eucalyptus genes. I didn't do it (not on purpose, anyway, because I don't like the flavo(ur) of Vac-O-Rub). I continue to grow them, press them, and ferment them, as a favo(u)r for UC Davis.

I selectively breed, both plants & animals. I grock DNA. I have healthy horse & dog lines, and my veggies and grasses seem stable. The cows, hogs, sheep & goats are cows, hogs, sheep & goats. Our steak, bacon & cheese is tasty.

But every now & then, TheUniverse throws us a wobbler ... Who are you to tell me (or anyone else) that "gawd/ess" doesn't want Vac-O-Rub flavo(u)red Merlot?

More to the point, why do you have a problem with Humans trying to understand the underlying process? It's probably been happening since before DNA has existed. It's also probably the reason we're here, as humans. Surely understanding the process is a better option than burying ones head in the sand?

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Trollface

I'll stick with the malaria thanks...

Its contribution in the control of world population is invaluable!

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Devil

Attack of the Killer Shrews?

http://www.archive.org/details/The_Killer_Shrews

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Rumor has it ...

Dr. Morreau's estate has an island available for lease, cheap. Comes with starter kit.

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Oh dear, here we go. Shall we put this next to the other rman-made cockups that went awry?

Myxomatosis

Giant Hogweed

Anthrax

Giles Brandreth

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Anonymous Coward

@Simbu

Whilst I'd not wish anyone harm and I hope that your wish doesn't come true; you truely are a cock.

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Facepalm

Ignoring my personal thoughts on population growth...

You seem have missed the troll icon.

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idiots

"Concerns that this might result in those populations being completely replaced by the superior lab-developed individuals can be addressed, they say, by the use of cunningly selected mutants"

Haven't these idiots heard of evolution? People like this are certainly arrogant enough to think that they can do better than evolution, and they are foolish. Evolution will likely do something totally unexpected with the modified genes. We still know so very little about how it all works.

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Anonymous Coward

safe? yeah right!

It looks like they have forgotten history here. How about Africanized bees(aka killer bees), Argentine ant, rats and rabbits just to name few. In some cases it affects native populations so much that they tend to resort to shagging the wrong species(or should I say said species head)..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9T1vfsHYiKY

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Childcatcher

Transgenic..

...as opposed to transgender which they have been releasing into the world for years.

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WTF?

Bear of little brain here

If the modified mozzie is strong enough to compete with and establish itself amongst the natural population, how can it then be removed, other than with a yet stronger (modified) mozzie?

And yes I did RTFA (several times) and the Wikipedia page on underdominance wasn't a shining beacon of clarity either...

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Happy

Of course the real trick is to create a genetic variant of the maleria virus which gives immunity to the natural one; we act as its host and it kills mosquitoes. Neutralise the disease and ultimately ensure it's genetically advantageous for mosquitoes to not bite humans. We're not that clever yet though.

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X-Men : Revenge of the Arials.

Starring: Pimply Zucks who is obviously a mal-aria resistant mutant.

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