Genetic Roulette picked apart on Youtube

This comes via PythagoreanCrank in the Forum. The League of Nerds has just published an hour-long investigation into the documentary, Genetic Roulette, and they are as kind as can be expected from scientists who know what they are talking about. Just a casual conversation on a couch with no green screen, a magical cat, and just enough swear words to add color to their tin foil hats!

Organic Farming Reliant on Synthetic Nitrogen

A number of studies have suggested that organic farming better addresses issues related to climate change than non-organic farming. Many of the reported climate change advantages of organic farming flow from its prohibition of synthetic fertilizers and exclusive use of organic fertilizers. In the debate over the future of agriculture, organic food proponents have been using these results to support their arguments. One such statement is found in the Organic Farming Research Foundation’s August 2012 publication Organic Farming for Health and Prosperity which states “…organic farming has been shown to effectively mitigate climate change by increasing carbon sequestration in the

Dr. Huber turns down my generous offer

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This is the beginning of the end of this particular sad tale of fear mongering and misinformation. Anti-GMO darling Dr. Don M Huber is on a tour of the Sunshine State, giving two talks in Tallahassee and one in Gainesville.  In Tallahassee he got a rock-star’s welcome with coverage on the news describing how dangerous GMO food is, and a meeting with politicians.  On my calendar November 12 had a big red circle on it for some time. Huber was in town tonight to tell his story of poison food and deadly new organisms.  I went with one of

So Much for My Favorite 2012 Paper

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Republished from Illumination. Ask any scientist what papers truly intrigued or inspired them.  All of us have a few. One of my favorites hit Cell Research back in summer of 2012.  In this paper, Zhang et al claimed that dietary microRNAs from rice were somehow ushered through the digestive gauntlet and modulated physiologically relevant changes in LDL, at least in mice.  MicroRNAs are a relatively recent regulatory regimen, a monkey wrench in the central dogma in of molecular biology.  These tiny runs of a 1-2 dozen nucleotides interact with RNA, leading to its degradation. They interact with RNA to change translation

A Plant Scientist’s perspective on bill 113

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Today, the Hawai’i County Council will hear testimony concerning bill 113, which seeks to ban or limit most genetically engineered plants on the island. The bill is a successor to bill 79, which was withdrawn. While Kaua’i county debates the production of GMOs and the spraying of pesticides, the Big Island stands alone in debating a bill solely about genetically engineered crops. Bill 113 would ban the cultivation of genetically engineered plants in the open air, except for papayas and other crops that specific people or organizations have grown on a location in the past. For instance cattle farmers