TABLE 1.3 Plant Pesticides Reviewed by EPA




Bacillus thuringiensis


Bacillus thuringiensis


Bacillus thuringiensis


Bacillus thuringiensis

viral coat protein

cucumber mosaic virus

viral coat protein

papaya ringspot virus

viral coat protein

virus Y

viral coat protein

watermelon mosaic virus

viral coat protein

zucchini yellow mosaic virus


potato leaf roll virus

a Reviewed for use in corn.

b Reviewed for use in all plants.

c Reviewed for use in potatoes.

Source: EPA 1999a

resistant to beetles was developed by Monsanto and was cleared for commercial release by USDA in March 1995, subject to EPA and FDA review. The Cry3A delta-endotoxin from Bt was reviewed by EPA in early 1995. An exemption under FFDCA from the requirement of a tolerance for this Bt toxin and the genetic material necessary for its production eliminated the need to establish a maximal permissible level for residues of this Bt toxin in potatoes. For the exemption, EPA reviewed data on toxicity and allergenicity and convened a subpanel of the FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel to discuss its review; the panel concluded that the Bt potato presented “little potential for human dietary toxicity.” Table 1.3 lists the plant pesticides that have been reviewed by EPA.

1.5.5 Current Profile of Transgenic Plants

Over 40 transgenic crop varieties have been cleared through the federal review processes for commercial use in the United States. Of them, 17 (as of December 1999) contain transgenes for pest-protection. Of the 17, 14 containing Bt genes have been developed and cleared by USDA for commercial release (table 1.4) (USDA 1999b). Although the EPA 1994 rule is not yet final, the plant-pesticides in these crops have been reviewed and their gene products registered as plant-pesticides by EPA (table 1.3). Five virus-resistant transgenic pest-protected plant varieties have achieved nonregulated status from USDA (table 1.4).

Transgenic crops were first planted commercially in the 1995 growing season. Since then, their use has been rapidly increasing. In 1997, 20.3

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