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Insecticide Inside: Gene-modified rice cuts chemical spraying in China

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12:36pm, April 27, 2005

In the hands of a sample of rural Chinese farmers, varieties of rice genetically modified (GM) to be insect resistant reduce pesticide use and increase crop yields, according to a new study.

Some scientists greet the finding as a demonstration of biotechnology's promise to prevent environmental damage and pesticide-related illnesses. But others emphasize that the study addresses neither potential risks to consumers nor the possibility that insects might quickly adapt to the modified crop, forcing farmers once again to resort to heavy pesticide use.

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