FDA approves genetically modified pig for food and medical use

For the first time, the Food and Drug Administration approved for food and human therapeutics on Monday a genomic alteration in domestic pigs that prevents them from producing a sugar that can cause allergic reactions in some people. “A tremendous milestone for scientific …

Lawsuit calls for USDA to release study on QR codes and GMO food labeling

The anti-GMO group Center for Food Safety filed suit against the USDA to force release of a study on the impact of using digital disclosures such as QR codes to identify foods made with GMO ingredients. "In the United States, there has never been a food labeling requirement met by QR codes," says the center, which prefers a written label on food packages.

Drawing a road map of corn’s ‘jumping genes’

An international team of researchers has mapped the “jumping genes,” formally named transposable elements, or transposons, in corn, says UC-Davis. “The discovery could ultimately benefit the breeding and production of maize, one of the world’s most important crops.”

Legal fight over CRISPR patent goes to appeals court

The University of California has turned to the U.S. appeals court based in Washington, D.C., in a dispute with the Broad Institute over who owns the patents for the gene-editing tool known as CRISPR, says The Verge. "This means the heated battle over who owns one of the most revolutionary biotech inventions of our time will likely continue for months or even years from now," the report says.

Scientists find enzyme that helps rice plants block arsenic

Rice tends to absorb arsenic from the soil more readily than other food crops, prompting concern about the presence of the chemical in baby food. "Scientists have identified enzymes that help rice plant roots tame arsenic, converting it into a form that can be pushed back into the soil," thereby reducing the threat to humans, says Science News.

GMO apple slices to go to Midwest stores in first U.S. sales

A year after U.S. regulators approved the Arctic apple, genetically engineered to resist browning, the first batch of the apples will go on sale in grab-and-go pouches of apple slices in 10 stores in the Midwest, says Capital Press. "A QR computer scan code on the packaging enables consumers to get information, including that the apple slices are genetically modified, but nothing directly on the packing identifies it."