(Reuters) - Pigs fed a diet of only genetically modified grain showed markedly higher stomach inflammation than pigs who dined on conventional feed, according to a new study by a team of Australian scientists and U.S. researchers.
The study adds to an intensifying public debate over the impact of genetically modified crops, which are widely used by U.S. and Latin American farmers and in many other countries around the world.
Severe Stomach Inflammation
Researchers said there were no differences seen between pigs fed the GM and non-GM diets for feed intake, weight gain, mortality, and routine blood biochemistry measurements.
But those pigs that ate the GM diet had a higher rate of severe stomach inflammation - 32 percent of GM-fed pigs compared to 12 percent of non-GM-fed pigs. The inflammation was worse in GM-fed males compared to non-GM fed males by a factor of 4.0, and GM-fed females compared to non-GM-fed females by a factor of 2.2. As well, GM-fed pigs had uteri that were 25 percent heavier than non-GM fed pigs, the study said.
The researchers said more long-term animal feeding studies need to be done.
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