Develop transgenic or other techniques that decrease potential for the spread of transgenes into wild populations.

Evolution of pest resistance to pest-protected plants was the third major ecological impact addressed by the committee. The committee concluded that pest resistance to pest-protected plants could have a number of potential environmental and health impacts such as a return to the use of more harmful chemicals or replacement of an existing pest-protected variety with novel varieties for which there is less information available about health and environmental impacts. The committee recommends that

If a pest-protectant or its functional equivalent is providing effective pest control, and if growing a new transgenic pest-protected plant variety threatens the utility of existing uses of the pest-protectant or its functional equivalent, implementation of resistance management practices for all uses should be encouraged (for example, Bt proteins used both in microbial sprays and in transgenic pest-protected plants).

In addition to the above recommendations, the committee recommends general ecological research to

Improve our understanding of the molecular basis of pest-plant interactions and of the population ecology and genetics of target pests so that more ecologically and evolutionarily sustainable approaches to the use of pest-protected plants can be developed.

Develop more specific expression systems for transgenes in ways that lessen notarget exposure and delay pest adaptation (for example, use of promoters10that would limite expression to certain tissues).

Monitor ecological impacts of pest-protected crops on a long term basis to ensure the detection of impacts that may not be predicted from tests conducted during the regulatory approval process.


ES.6.1 Background and History

In 1986, the Coordinated Framework for the Regulation of Biotechnology apportioned jurisdiction over transgenic products by using exist-


DNA sequences which regulate the expression of genes.

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
500 Fifth St. N.W. | Washington, D.C. 20001

Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved.
Terms of Use and Privacy Statement